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Blue Jeans and Cultural Relevance

Recently I was listening to a young preacher share about the resurrection. It was a great Message, and I’m sure it left an impression on his congregation. He also made another, literal, impression on me that I thought was meaningful. Let me explain by sharing a personal memory:

I was raised on the farm where young men wore jeans and chewed tobacco. A mark of manhood was to have the round imprint of their tobacco can on the back pocket of their jeans. I’m definitely not endorsing tobacco as a mark of manhood, but I noticed something from the young preacher that has the potential in our era to be a definite mark of godliness.

The young preacher didn’t have the imprint of a tobacco can, but instead the imprint of the iPhone he used repeatedly to reference his notes and Bible during his sermon. His phone was literally making its mark on people for the kingdom of God.

Times have changed. Identifying marks have changed. While both the tobacco and mobile phone leave an imprint, consider their differences:

One was kept in the back pocket, one in the front. This spoke metaphorically to me about how one looks to a life in the past, one is helping us press on to our future.

One represents self-pleasure; the iPhone presents great potential to serve God!

One facilitates a bad habit, addiction, and even death; the other, if used properly, can create great discipline with access to treasures of wisdom and a life of freedom!

Yes, this young preacher had a great Message that day, but his faded blue jeans taught me just as much. God’s given us tools in our digital culture that have the power to leave a lasting imprint on those we meet. It’s up to us to use those things to speak Life and Truth into those we meet. At GNPI, we’re committed to sharing the Good News of Jesus with more people everyday through tools like mobile technology. We pray you’ll join us on that journey in 2015.

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