Around September every year, I look forward to an “Apple Special Event“. At this event, we witness some of the best product unveiling theatrics anywhere. Adjectives like awesome, unmatched, best, most advanced etc. pepper presenters’ speeches. I watch the event because I love Apple products and what to see what they’ve done. And, yes, see what I could look forward to using, next. I’ve used and prefer Apple devices to most. I’ve done this meager review of the TouchBar and this one on the iPhone SE. I haven’t written anything about products at launch as some do. Only what I’ve used / use. This year, besides devices, there were two things from Apple’s event that struck me.
The number of times, “The team” or, “Our team”, was mentioned stood out to me. I’d like to think that this isn’t the first time Apple presenters on this day mentioned team. I’m sure one could find this from past events. I don’t know if this was deliberate or by default, (I don’t know if Apple does anything in this setting by accident), but I liked it.
A great reminder that it takes many people to do something significant. Yes, I think Apple products are great; better than most. Some might say I’ve drunk the Kool-Aid. That doesn’t bother me. The thing is, at some point, we have to decide on one product or another. We all have to decide for ourselves what’s great or good enough for us no matter how subjective.
The lesson here is that the team is important. Nothing significant is ever achieved in isolation. In the context of the Church and Church tech teams, we’ve been having it. This is somethingthat sitss in our DNA. We all have gifts and our challenge is more than using them; it is about intentionality in using them in a symphony.
Ah symphony, that lovely Greek word. This word has Greek origins as Symphonia. This meant / means agreement or concord of sound. I mean every great case in the context of the Church needs a Hebrew or Greek work, right? Effective teams produce great ‘products’ when there is an agreement–one sound.
Unity in your team (and Church) is one of the most important ways of showing who Jesus is. Here’s a question for you and your team: How is your harmony?
Steve Jobs, even Tim Cook, may have said something about being responsible for the environment. Whether or not you believe in climate change, it is a good thing not to trash the environment. Apple gave more time to talk about their efforts in creation care as they make their products and deliver their service.
[Video via YouTube]
They spoke about what they had done — going 100% on renewable energy in their facilities. More than that they shared about what they will be doing to be kinder to the environment through their recycling program. Their commitment to keeping getting better.
Now, we believe God has given us a beautiful earth. Why wouldn’t we be good stewards of it? This made me think about what I’m doing, at a personal level, to be responsible for the environment.
To take it a step further, what am I doing within my Church and Church tech team? My mind went to some old and broken (Apple) devices abandoned in a cranny in our church building. How deliberate are we in our recycling efforts, for example? Do we toss used / useless batteries in the garbage instead of taking them to be recycled or disposed of properly?
Outro / TL;DR
More than the devices unveiled by Apple, I was challenged on two things. The one was the importance of the team. Great things are only done when teams are in one accord. When they work together in harmony. Make it a practice to check the health of your team. Do it honestly.
The environment matters and we, as the Church and Church tech people, have a responsibility. As with other things in how we work, nothing works unless we put the effort in. How well are we doing in playing our part and being responsible with the environment?
[Images via Apple]