How can technology be employed to address the increase in suicides among the young? What could be some creative digital pathways and opportunities that might help stop people from taking their lives? How can the Church respond to this problem?
Many Christian techies and creatives are unaware of or under-appreciate the unique skills and talents God has given to them. They are unsure how to live out the passions for the Kingdom. But I’ve seen how their eyes light up when they hear stories and examples of how technology is creatively used and maximised for God’s mission.
It’s as if they suddenly realise things like: “My line of code can actually help save a girl’s life from sex trafficking!” Or “My creative design and writing could contribute to the Gospel’s reach across the globe!”
As they discover these opportunities, they inevitably gain new, God-given vision of how they can invest their digital and creative gifts for building His Kingdom.
DIGITAL DOES GOOD
Young professionals of the digital generation are often under-challenged in their own churches. For example, a CEO of a tech start-up company who has just launched a successful app might be asked to help with the worship slides, or design the church bulletin. It’s easy to miss the potential to help solve harder and larger missional challenges in this day and age.
We all desire to be a part of something larger than ourselves. Young people are driven by causes for the problems they see and experience around them. When given the opportunities and right connections to a community with like-minded, like-gifted individuals, the gears are kicked into place for them to make significant impact for Jesus.
Indigitous started as a global movement of people who love Jesus and are passionate about using their strengths for God in the creative and digital space. Indigitous communities around the world bring together the best minds and hearts from the tech and creative spheres, inspiring them with projects and challenges that cause them to stretch and grow their gifts.
I heard an account of a lady who was 5 weeks pregnant and desperate because her partner kept pressurising her to abort the baby. Depressed, she searched online for help and found Boiling Waters, a Facebook page set up by a few brothers in Indigitous Manila – a mixture of creative writers, designers, website and social media experts.
Moved by the inspirational posts, she started chatting with one of the volunteers of the FaceBook page. It led quickly to a spiritual conversation. She was then invited to watch Falling Plates – a powerful 4-minute Gospel short film that has been watched by millions on YouTube. She received Christ that day and decided that she will not abort the baby.
A NEW KIND OF LIFEHACK
#HACK is an annual global missional hackathon that brings together the best creatives, technologists, strategists in various cities around the world for a weekend. Almost like a special force team, you will “hack” out digital-based prototypes and creative solutions to missional challenges in your context.
These challenges seek to address social issues in the city to contribute to the good of our world, but also to make Jesus known everywhere. In November 2016, Singapore hosted the first Indigitous #HACK event, the first-ever Christian hackathon in our country.
This year at #HACK, we encourage teams to work on potential solutions to some of the social issues in Singapore.
A few of these challenges include:
1. Countering social issues that are contrary to God’s values (e.g. sexual immorality and abuse)
2. Positively impacting the underprivileged (e.g. the poor, sick, disabled and elderly)
What dreams has God placed on your heart? What are some ways you desire to contribute to the digital strategies and engagement in our city? Does it excite you to use your talents for God in the digital and creative space?
Then this #HACK could be for you.
#HACK is happening next weekend, October 20-22, 2017. You don’t have to be a programmer to get involved. Creative thinkers of all types are welcome: Designers, photographers, writers, project managers, social media gurus – we want you! For those interested, please register here. Participation is free.