It’s phenomenal how the world has changed during COVID-19. Even though we are in a new stage of Level 3 lockdown, many people are still working from home and learners and students are studying at home. Some people are returning to work every second week (one week in the office, one week at home), though this does not apply to those working in factories, workshops and construction sites as they need to be onsite every day. In chatting with our Chicago family earlier today, Roy mentioned how the company he works for could have most staff in their department working from home unless they need to meet people. Naturally, many of the day to day things we do still require we go out, such as shopping, banking or walking (or running or cycling), though even with these there are changes and challenges such as face masks, sanitization and temperature taking.
Maybe the world will use the internet to develop new ways of doing business, work, education, hotel, industry, etc. in innovative ways, unthought-of up till now. I presume developers are working around the clock to take us to the next level of internet and electronic media. When one looks at the latest visit to the International Space Station, we see how technology has advanced. What is next in line for us ordinary, day to day people? When I thought we were advanced with banks reducing branches and focusing on electronic banking, I find out that there are banks without any offices … everything is done electronically! So amazing. The question that confronts me is, “Are we going to need all these high-rise buildings for office space and are we going to need huge conference centers?”
I have learnt from the teaching received from Roy and his sons how to record videos of sermons/church services on my cellphone. The trick, however, is to get that recording onto my YouTube channel for broadcast purposes. In other words … how do I get my ‘video’ from my phone to your phone, tablet, laptop or TV? I was taught to do the recording on my cellphone because the phone camera is a good one. Then I needed to go to my YouTube channel on my cellphone and upload the video, which takes time and uses data. This worked well for the first few videos I uploaded to broadcast.
Recently, I thought I would like to add slides of Bible verses and sermon headings to the video. That is, I wanted to edit the video. Again, Roy and his boys guided me through what to do. Roy sent me stage by stage pictures with explanations of how to do it. I was pretty bewildered and asked for a Zoom Session where we could “practice” doing what was required. So, this week I recorded the sermon/service earlier, and by yesterday late afternoon I had it all edited using an app known as iMovie.
Now, I needed Roy’s help again to take it from iMovie to the YouTube channel. This is where it gets difficult and technical. Everything went wrong! First, we could not upload the movie because the YouTube channel only permitted 15 minutes of upload. Then, we tried to save the edited movie to the phone and there was insufficient memory! Then we tried to transfer all the photos and video clips to the laptop and in the process we lost the “movie” … the sermon / service! We tried just about everything to recover the data, but it was totally lost! We tried to back up the phone from iTunes and this failed too. Roy and I ended our Zoom session and I continued unsuccessfully to find the movie. However, I managed to (with Roy’s earlier help) transfer all the pictures and clips from the cellphone to the laptop. So, the cellphone now had sufficient memory and data space. I went to sleep at 3am. This morning after breakfast and devotions, I re-recorded the movie and edited it with iMovie. After Zooming Chicago as we do every Saturday late afternoon, I, following Roy’s guidance, saved the movie to the camera roll on the cellphone and then uploaded it to YouTube. It was almost completed when the upload failed.
Roy advised me to try it again, and this time it was successful. Praise the Lord … but, the pictures for the sermon heading presented incorrectly. I’ll do it differently next time.
That is a lengthy explanation … but here’s the thing. The ‘movie’ … that is the service/sermon … includes me speaking out against the enemy of God. I used this Scripture:
1Pe 5:8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
The enemy is dangerous and deadly, and when he is exposed he responds in aggressive ways! Our enemy is an evil spirit. He cannot be seen. He orchestrates mayhem and interferes with anything that exposes him, especially when it intends to protect the people of God. The long story above shows us two things. Firstly, it shows that the internet and electronic platforms will be used more extensively for business, church and most aspects of life. Secondly, the internet and electronic platforms are being used by the devil to corrupt people’s minds … and he will do whatever he can to interfere with it being used to further the Gospel and the cause of Jesus … from now onwards and into the future … as the world’s dynamics change more and more after COVID-19. When things were going wrong late last night/early this morning, I said to the Lord that I am aware of the content of my message for Sunday and I will not let the devil get to me. Even if I needed to re-record, I would do it (and I did). He calls you and me to “resist” the devil:
1Pe 5:9 Resist him (the devil), standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.
Dear God, thank You for the advancement in technology. Help us to use it for Your glory, but please protect the church and pastor-teachers as they use it. May they never fear the enemy as they expose him and his sinister schemes and promote the Lord Jesus and His blood-stained cross for the salvation of the lost. Amen.