Undergroundchurch Blog

Preparing the Church for the future

Archive for May, 2010

Computer Parts of the Spirit: Temporary Media

Posted by undergroundchurch on May 28, 2010

Temporary media: USB flash drives, floppy disks that you can use to transfer data physically to another computer. This is like those times when your grandma hands down that recipe to you because her mom gave it to her.  It doesn’t change, it just keeps going and going… kinda like fruitcake.

The theme for the two letters to the Corinthians is about about the unity in the Body of Christ.  It’s a how-to instruction manual from a church that didn’t know how-to.  The key learning point is that we may be different, with different gifts, passions, drive and focus, but we have a common Spirit that works in all of His members allowing complete harmony.

One feature of the USB drive on a computer is that as long as there is a USB port on the computer, you can copy file between any two computers – PC, IBM, MAC, UNIX, and any other computer platform acronym can transfer information between each other even though the operating systems are not necessarily interchangeable.

One of the problems that we tend to create in our churches comes from our insistence on making everyone think and work the same way.  I understand having a common goal, but we aren’t all made the same.

Paul says it this way,

“The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body… So it is with Christ Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.'” (1 Corinthians 12:12-20).

This means that my gifts, talents and drive aren’t necessarily the same as yours.  In fact, if we both had the same gifting, then one of us would not be necessary.  The common piece is the harmony we have through the unity of Holy Spirit.

Our different gifts allow us to address a much larger area.  When we diminish the importance of some gifts in the church, we limit the potential effectiveness.

I suppose the trick is to learn to show people how to be like Christ, not like me.


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Computer Parts of the Spirit: Firmware

Posted by undergroundchurch on May 13, 2010

Firmware: This is embedded coding for hardware pieces to perform dedicated functions. It’s like the blender, toaster or stove in the kitchen – each have their specific function.  Each computer chip contains its own firmware code so that it can be used for a specific function and not much else.  A toaster makes a lousy poached egg.

1 Corinthians tells us that the Spirit of God gives different gifts to different people for the building up of the church.  Because we have different gifts and tasks, we cover much greater ground than if we were all alike.  Think of it this way, if we were all blenders, all but one of us would be unnecessary, and we couldn’t do much but blend.

The power of unity is not finding “common ground” and more than simply “embracing our differences”; it is actually in “leveraging our differences for the common good”.

The computer is a mix of all different chips run by firmware, but if the other components of the computer don’t leverage the power of each chip, the power of the computer as an effective tool is severely hampered. Many chips on the computer connect to other chips through operating system drivers. If the driver is incorrect or not installed for a particular chip, that chip just sits there taking up space in the computer case.

Finding common ground merely relegates our differences to a back room and doesn’t allow for the Holy Spirit to work through His church to the extent He desires.

Embracing our differences is a cultural “sound good” phrase, but as much as it might acknowledge the different gifts in one another, it leaves each to fend for their own self.  The person with one gift accepts the person with another gift, which gives a sense of unity, but nothing really comes of it.

It is only when we do both and leverage one another’s gifts that we can truly discover the power of God’s Spirit in His church.  With a common purpose, we join the different parts of the body together through the power of Love (1 Corinthians 13), and the one who has one gift is supported through the work of others with different gifts when the time arises.  This process reciprocates and each person gets to both serve and be served.

In essentials – unity; in non-essentials – liberty; in all things – love.

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Computer Parts of the Spirit: CD ROM

Posted by undergroundchurch on May 8, 2010

CD ROM: Yes, most of today’s CD ROMs are really CD/DVD writers, but in its truest form, the CD ROM was and is a read only storage disk that holds information that can be retrieved from the desk drawer.  It is like the cook book in the kitchen.  You use it to get what you want and then you put it away.

CD ROMs are good for storing things that you want to keep for a long time, but don’t access very often.  I have CD ROMs full of files that are 10 years old.  I may or may not ever need them again, but if I do, I know where to go.

During the times of old, the people would sometimes set up a stones called “Memorial stones” to remember something that happened at that spot.  One particular set of stones were set up by Israel after he they crossed the Jordan River into the land of promise.  That memorial stones became a marker to remember the event, not just for the people that crossed, but also for the generations that followed.

Hundreds of years after the event, Israelites, who wandered the land, saw those stones and remembered how God brought them into the promised land and in so doing, their nation was born.

In your own life, you have times and places that can be your own memorial stones.  Maybe it was the day you were delivered from smoking, the day you were saved or the day God healed you.  Whatever those moments, they are forever etched in your memory.

Use those memories to help you when the times are tough.  Remember God’s faithfulness in your life, in the life of your parents or the lives of people in the Bible.  Those memorials can help you through situations when the going is tough.

Remembering the faithfulness of God is the key to victorious living in the times of trouble.

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Computer Parts of the Spirit: RAM

Posted by undergroundchurch on May 6, 2010

RAM: Stands for Random Access Memory and is the kitchen counter on which everything is laid out that is currently in use by the computer. You only want to have on the counter things you use a lot for quick access (e.g. salt, pepper, sugar, toasters, etc.)

I remember when this stuff was $100 a megabyte, now you can buy 4,000 times that amount for $100, and it is one of the cheapest ways to extend the life of a computer.

If you add more RAM, the rest of your computer doesn’t work as hard and tends to do things a bit quicker.  Why?  It is your kitchen counter space.  The more space you have, they more room you have to set everything out that you need to cook with.  If you have enough counter space, you never need to go to the draw, cupboard or pantry.  Just get everything out one time, and you are good to go.

RAM and the WORD

The RAM is like putting the Word of God in you mind and heart.  The more you place in your memory, the less you have to run back to a Bible to find that one thing you need for the situation you’re in right now.

Let’s say that you are ministering Jesus to someone and you know that there is something in the Bible about ‘forgiveness’, but you just can’t remember what the story is about or what the lesson is to learn.  If you constantly flood your mind and heart with the Bible, you will be hiding it in your heart.  Then, when the time is right, the Holy Spirit can pull that right off the counter, bring it to your attention, and you get to bless someone.

However, if you don’t equip, He can’t use you.

Just remember, a salesman without a pen is a salesman without a sale.  A Christian without the Word of God in the heart, is just another person wanting to do good in the world, they just don’t have the tools with which to succeed.

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Computer Parts of the Spirit: Hard Drive

Posted by undergroundchurch on May 1, 2010

The computer hard drive is a marvel of engineering. It usually contains multiple platters on which it electronically stores and retrieves information.

Information is the key to everything in life from reading a book to forming your opinions about that book to writing up a book report, information is the backbone of everything we do.

Hard drives capture raw information from computer applications to those photos of you with your finger in your nose.  We can change them, delete them and move them around.  The hard drive is like the kitchen cabinets in your kitchen. It holds everything you need to make meals.

If you look at the picture in this article, you will see a little silver curled piece in the hard drive (lower left). This is a very, very powerful magnet/ Check this video out just to see how powerful.

What I find most intriguing is that the data on the disk itself is created using a different magnet and that if that very powerful magnet were any closer to the disk, it would destroy everything on the disk.  In order for the latency arm to write data to the disk, it needs to have a very dangerous magnet dangerously close to it.

Practical Application

As believers, we travel through a world full of sin, wickedness, ungodly acts, violence, gossip, deceit, fear, worry and doubt.  We are constantly gathering, modifying and changing data.  If we put garbage in to our lives, we will get garbage out.  If we fill it with truth, we will get truth out. We are in the world, but we are not to be part of the world. (Romans 12:2)

Lurking around the corner is a force that wants to destroy every piece of your life.  Like that magnet, this enemy can destroy you in a day.  But as strong as he may seem, there are stronger bolts holding him back.  The Holy Spirit is at work in you to help you gain the right information and keep the devil at bay.

One day, you will leave this world and the dangers it contains.  But until that day, be vigilant, gathering that which is good and fighting against that which wants to destroy your life.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. – Philippians 4:8

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