following your hunger to dangerous places
We have begun our series on Luke 15, about our Prodigal God. In response to the grumbling and muttering of the religious leaders, Jesus tells a story about a sheep that gets lost. The reason sheep get lost is because they are hungry. They wander off looking for food and can’t find their way home. Their drive to satisfy their hunger leads them away from their shepherd, away from the flock, and often into pretty dangerous places.
I told a story about how sheep can get stuck on precipitous ledges eating grass and then fall to their death. (I also called my sister’s tibia a ‘tibula’. This gaff apparently shut down the more medically-savvy congregants. Apologies) There is actual video footage of this phenomenon on youtube. Check it out:
So, we had this video all cued up to play in the middle of the sermon yesterday. I would have cropped it to just the 30 seconds before and after fall. At the last minute, I decided to pass and we didn’t play it. Primarily because it would have been a break to the flow of the sermon and in the interest of time, I could ‘tell’ the video much more efficiently. I didn’t think I would gain more by showing the video than the risk of ‘media transition’ and ‘media malfunction’ merited.
What do you think? Would you have like to have seen this video during the sermon? Do you think I should incorporate more vid clips into sermons? (no guarantee that I will, but we CAN, and I’m curious if you would like it). Throw a comment up here and let me know.
Curious about why Jesus tells a story about hungry sheep in response to grumbling religious leaders? Wondering how your hunger and appetites lead you to dangerous places?
You can hear the rest of the sermon here. You can jump into the conversation in a Restoration small group here. You can finish out the series with us each Sunday until the end of May…
April 20, 2009 @ 5:31 pm
My general vote would be “no video” for all the reasons you mention above. That being said, there may be times it is worth it. Sometimes visuals make points that words just can’t. Still remember the photo John Yates put up on the screen several years ago. It was of his very elderly mother kneeling by her bedside in prayer. That visual will encourage me for life.
April 20, 2009 @ 5:45 pm
Definitely think you made the right choice on this one. While it was somewhat (awkwardly) comical in your telling, the actual video was rather disturbing… yikes! In general, I’m not opposed to video, but do see the concerns. Ultimately, if you’re in prayer over the sermons, I trust the Lord to lead you accordingly. He knows best what will add to your sermon and I would hate for any personal preference to get in the way of that. I look forward to the rest of this series!
Mary Ann Calhoun
April 20, 2009 @ 7:13 pm
I would vote for no video (especially this one touching on what might be particular sensitivities in the audience) I think if there is a video in a sermon, it might have the tendency to be the only thing folks might remember or it may distract from the main point of a sermon if the video is used to merely provide a supporting illustration.
Then there is the whole problem with Powerpoint being so very fickle in its operation.
Unless it can be seamlessly worked in without stopping the flow while the congregation waits on it,,, it could potentially be a plus.
April 21, 2009 @ 10:26 am
REALLY helpful folks. Thanks so much for thoughtfully giving some feedback. I am grateful.
April 21, 2009 @ 12:22 pm
This particular video made me feel more than a bit queasy. How did the guy know they were going to fall? Was he some kind of shepherd when he wasn’t busy being a videographer? The lamb part was particularly tragic…but then I guess the analogy you made last Sunday in your sermon is apt—we happily eat our grass, think we’re getting what we need, decide we’re not, go look for another tuft somewhere else, all the while pretty much blind to the bigger predicament we are in…with the slippery slope awaiting us…and we can’t save ourselves from it… (Or as the guy making the video said–“Oh this doesn’t look good at all…and there’s nothing we can do!”
As for video in general–I think there might be some rare times when it’d be good, if it’s decent quality (which this one wasn’t—very blurry and shaky), and short, and says it in a way that words alone can’t (or in this case—I think your words were actually better).
Just my 2 cents….