A few weeks ago, I began using Twitter. If you’re not familiar with Twitter, it is another online social networking application. Like Facebook, you can follow people and receive their updates. What’s distinct about Twitter is the updates you send to your friends are limited to 140 characters. No pictures, no invitations to become a pirate or ninja. Instead, you get is some very brief updates on what your friends are doing.
When I started using Twitter, I never envisioned I’d use it the way I did a few hours ago. Last night, there was a tornado that passed less than a mile from my house. We had lost power and I had no idea if the tornado was headed in my direction. I was able to get on Twitter on my cell phone and get updates from my friend Anne. You can read more about this great story over at her blog: flowerdust.net.
Were the developers of Twitter thinking of this type of situation when they created this tool? I don’t know, but I think we are going to see more stories like this one. To follow my Twitter updates, you can go to http://twitter.com/sunnythomas.
Earlier this month, the Catalyst Vanagon was spotted in the LifeChurch.tv parking lot. The Catalyst guys were here to pay Terry Storch a visit. Terry is the church’s Digerati Pastor and all around nice guy. He spoke to them about interesting stuff going on in Second Life. You watch the interview with Terry here.
It’s been awhile since my last entry. Sorry about that. A lot of exciting things have been going on in my world, so I’ll update you very soon. One of those things is a new project that I am helping with at church. I’m actually headed there right now. It’s called our Global Operations Center. More about that later.
For now, I want to wish everyone a Happy Easter. He is risen! For those of you who want to understand more about Jesus’ death and resurrection and what it means for you, I’d love to dialogue with you. Just leave me a comment. Easter is more than just easter eggs and rabbits. For those of you that have made the decision to trust and follow Jesus, I hope and pray that your relationship would grow stronger and deeper with Him. And finally, for those of you involved with the Easter services at your church, I pray that those services would go really well and that many people will make the commitment to follow Christ. He is risen!
This week, my church deployed new Panasonic 3500 HD cameras. The pictures are below. If you look closely at the serial number, you’ll notice that it says 0002. Yep, that’s right. This is the first install of these cameras anywhere in the world. 0001 is back in their lab in Japan. And yes, the video from the cameras look awesome.
This past weekend, I took my second trip to our LifeChurch.tv campus in Fort Worth. I was there in December to help with their transition from meeting in a school to meeting in a permanent facility. That launch went well and now we’re back to make some enhancements.
This weekend, we ran more network cables in the auditorium to support some new devices we’re deploying. One device hooks up to a camera and allows our leadership back at the central offices to view the weekend experiences live. The device we use is called Slingbox. When this gets fully deployed at all of our campuses, it will cut down on the number of on-site visits the leadership team will need to make. It’s pretty cool.
The other device we are deploying is a hard drive that stores a video of the weekend message. This is a replacement of current hard drive that is no longer manufactured. If the satellite feed was to go down, the remote campus and play the message from this hard drive as a backup.
This is what I love; using technology to make The Church more effective at presenting the Gospel. Very cool stuff!
Recently, I took my second flight on Southwest Airlines. You can read about my first trip here. This one seems more like the type of flights that Southwest are known for. On this flight, the flight attendants were pretty jovial. During their opening spiel about how to fasten your seat belts, they joked that if our Southwest flight suddenly turns into a Southwest cruise, you can use your seat as a floatation device.
What I was really pleased with was that our flight arrived at our destination 20 minutes early. Not just landing early, but at the gate 20 minutes early. Most airlines are not known for being punctual. I’m usually happy if the flight is only 10 minutes late. The flight attendant made note of our early arrival and asked everyone to tell their friends about it. She joked that if we were late, we would tell our friends, so make sure to let them know when we’re early too. She had a point. So, take Southwest. I continue to be a fan.
This is a question that I ask potential candidates when I’m interviewing them for an open position at work. What surprises me is that most people from very different backgrounds always seem to say the same thing. I find that God is also teaching me the very same thing.
It’s patience. God seems to be teaching me to more patient. I don’t want to learn this. I was everything right now or yesterday. I don’t like the idea of waiting on something. That’s how I feel when God is trying to teach me things. I know that God wants to teach me, but I want to learn those lessons quickly and then move on. I don’t like the fact that God is going to do things according to His timing and not mine. I don’t like the fact that Joseph in the Old Testament of the Bible spent many years in prison after being falsely accused. I don’t like the fact that Moses spent 40 years tending sheep in preparation for leading the nation of Israel. I don’t like the fact that even Jesus waited 30 years before starting his ministry on Earth. Can’t we get on with it?
So God has been teaching me a lot of things, like patience…but it’s been slower than I like. In his book, Purpose Driven Life, Rick Warren writes about how God puts situations and people in your life specifically to teach you things. That’s so true in my life. I think that’s one of the reasons God’s given me a special needs child. He wants me to learn patience, along with learning to be more loving, gracious, and compassionate. I think that why our house hasn’t sold yet after being on the market for four months. God is teaching me to trust Him and his timing. I can look at so many situations in my life and see that God really, really wants me to learn to be patient. I’m so tempted to tell God, “Okay, I’ve learned my lesson, can we move on now?” I don’t do that because I think God would reply, “Not just yet.”
What about you? Is He teaching you to be more patient? What else is He teaching you? What situations and people has He put in your life to teach you?