Monday, April 10, 2017

Listening for a Signal Amidst the Noise (Technology and the Presence of God)

Image result for john piippo technology
Fermi II, Monroe, MI

I use technology. Obviously, since I'm writing this on my laptop. I love the research capacity technology gives me. I like communicating through social media. I like having a
smart phone. I listen to Gregorian chant when praying.

I teach spiritual formation. This is about how God changes the human heart. (Book forthcoming, hopefully Summer 2018.)

Some technology aids the formation of the heart, such as listening to worship music. But interruptive technology (see below) and spiritual formation do not go together. Interruptive technology adds nothing to spiritual formation. Read the history of spiritual formation to verify this. The testimonies of people whose hearts experienced change do not mention technology. God does not need apps and gadgets to grow us.

Interruptive technology diverts from spiritual formation. It hinders and works against human heart change into Christlikeness. It adds no value to formation in Christ. One can be formed into Christlikeness, as has happened throughout the ages, without technology. 

This is because spiritual formation requires presence. Interruptive technology runs past presence. It distracts from the presence of God. It promotes double-mindedness.

Adam Gazzaley and Larry Rosen write:

"It is clear that our interruptive technologies are only going to become more effective in drawing our attention away from important aspects of life, so we urgently need to understand why we are so sensitive to interference and how we can find a "signal amidst the noise" in our high-tech world." (The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains In a High-Tech World, M.I.T. Press)

I am a facilitator of God's presence. I help people find a signal amidst the noise. This, for me, is the voice and presence of God. God's presence is the locus of spiritual formation and transformation. It is being lost. Our humanity has been brain hacked. (The person who cannot stop checking their smart phone.)


I am now writing Leading the Presence-Driven Church.