Ideas worth sharing?

Over the months there have been many different creatures in the pulpit on this blog – including a fish, a magpie, a heffalump and others. Today it is the turn of the TED. I’m referring not to a cuddly toy, but to Technology, Entertainment and Design, home of the TEDtalks. A TED talk is an 18-minute presentation by an expert who feels passionately about their subject, and believes that they have an ‘idea worth sharing’.

I have come late to the TED party, having been directed there earlier today by Phil Prior’s excellent blog post. In that post Phil asks the question as to why there are not more preachers and theologians  represented amongst TED’s ranks. There could be many reasons  for that, some of which I list below:

  • Our expertise is of interest to Christian ‘consumers’ but not to others
  • Accustomed as we are to communicating in a non-competitive environment, we have lost our creative communicative edge
  • We would struggle to fill 18 minutes in a compelling way
  • We would struggle to restrict ourselves to 18 minutes in a focused way
  • Assuming our audience’s good will, we presume too much on their tolerance
I believe that whilst some of those things may be partially true, none of them are wholly true.  Preachers should be amongst the most motivated, focused and dedicated communicators in the world. Not only that, but the church has now garnered over twenty centuries of experience in communicating across racial, generational and cultural divides. We do have something to say.
There are many description of our fundamental message as Christian communicators, but “an idea worth sharing” isn’t a bad place to start.