WWSJD is No Longer Important

Let’s review parts of the keynote that felt weak and see if Steve can make it shine.

-Jong-Moon Kim, Steve Jobs Introduces the iPhone 6 and Apple Watch”

Be sure to take the linked essay with a grain of salt. Mr. Kim decided that he knows exactly what Steve Jobs would have done in a situation like the one in which Apple found itself last week. While I felt a bit uneasy at some of the points of the presentation, and I am still wrestling personally with why, I would not have the audacity to think that my personal views of Apple make me a good judge of what Steve Jobs would do”.

I have no doubt that the presentation of the iPhone 6 and the Watch would have been different if Steve Jobs had still be around because Steve Jobs had a formula, a cadence, and a storytelling ability that very few people can even remotely emulate. Apple as it stands today is utilizing the skills and talents that it has at its disposal, instead of trying to be a poor representation of a post-mortem homage to Steve Jobs, which in my opinion is a strength and not a weakness as Kim seems to be suggesting.

In any case, perhaps Steve Jobs would have only introduced one Watch style (and the fashion segment would have hated it); perhaps Steve Jobs would have only design one iPhone 6 (and the press would have hated it); perhaps Steve Jobs would have spent more time discussing specific use cases instead of technical details (and the missing discussion topic would have been the same: battery life). What Kim has reminded me in all this is that the above statements simply don’t matter; this is no longer Apple under Steve Jobs, this is Apple under Tim Cook and they are not afraid to forge their own path based on their own strengths.

Read, Think, Share, Repeat

The Challenges of 2020

TL;DR: Follow this link.

One of the craziest things about Christianity during the protests of the last few weeks is the fact that there are churches out there not discussing the issues honestly, not taking the time to have the hard conversations, not devoting their Sunday services to betterment of the world and people around them. If you’re church isn’t talking about racism right now, if they don’t mention that black lives matter, instead focusing on platitudes that equate to the all lives matter” sentiment, it is time to start looking for a new church.

My wife and I meet with my home” church virtually via Zoom since the pandemic is still a thing. Kimball Avenue United Church of Christ & La Iglesia Episcopal de Nuestra Señora de las Américas (KANSA, together) combined in a collaborative way to create a single denomination focused on the needs of their community. They follow Christ together toward the vision of love, reconciliation, peace and justice. The justice looks like the demolition and rehabilitation of an old church building and its grounds into a community garden and labyrinth open to all who seek peace through contemplation.

I give this elevator speech to mention that COVID has not been kind to faith communities in general. Budgets have been slashed, funding and grants have been cut, and congregations in need are also working to serve those in need, who are less likely to be able to financially support their church in these times. KANSA in one of the good ones. They speak truth, they have the difficult conversations, they preach in a loud voice every Sunday that black lives matter, that racism has no place in the church, that the LGBTQ community deserves respect and support, and that Jesus was a social justice warrior, who fought for the least of these no matter who they were, where they were from, what they looked like.

In fact, Jesus was most harsh to those who had the means to help and decided not to answer the call.

These systems of oppression we are protesting have been around a long time; they have screwed up a lot of lives, they have been the reason for revolution and the downfall of entire civilizations, they don’t work. We need to find a better way to live by supporting each other. And support has to come in systemic, social, financial, and political ways, both national and local.

I am not local to KANSA anymore, but I support their mission, the way that mission manifests in the world, and the simple fact that they follow Jesus no matter how ostracizing that position can be at times. Which brings me to the point:

Thanks to a $10,000 matching gift’ from an anonymous donor, the challenge has become an opportunity. Over the next two months, we plan to raise at least $10,000 to meet the challenge. Through August 31, 2020, every donation we receive toward our 2020 Challenge” no matter how small or how large will be doubled by the matching gift.

KANSA is hurting financially and needs support, they do good work and are unabashedly progressive in their approach to our world. Donate now and see your contribution matched to keep one of the good ones fighting the good fight.

Thank you for your consideration.