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Monday, June 22, 2009

A Closer Look (The Cue Philosophy Part III)

The Cue exists to . . .

. . . create an original, unsullied, experience-rich, multi-layered environment
where we increase the occurrence of people interacting
with God, his Word, his truth, his people,
and face their barriers that interrupt and antagonize the life Jesus invites.

(Generally, we get a little queasy with mission statements because we are not very linear. We can't even draw a straight line. That's why "mission statements" are usually long at the Winds. It's our rebellion against the conventional "make your mission statement fit on a t-shirt" wisdom.)

The only non-negotiable element in the whole Cue experience is God’s Word as the living, enlightening torrent of truth that must be present every Cue. Other than that one item, everything else is negotiable.

This philosophy of The Cue means we can design the experience around any elements that are excellent and connect into biblical themes we feel are current needs or culturally vital.

The role of symbol, metaphor and image are integral in designing The Cue. While not an absolute mandate, for each Cue series design we desire to “speak” through a central (or multiple) image, metaphor, or symbol in order to lastingly influence people’s hearts, minds and emotions with the big picture—just as Jesus did with the parables.

At Westwinds, we will design The Cue in ways that have never been implemented in the traditional church, even though innovation—in and of itself—is not the goal.

Here is a list of element options that begin to get at the possibilities…

poetic readings
disembodied readings
video confession
unconventional aesthetics
message/talking head
spiritual journey stories
messages with a soundtrack
screen poetry/prayer
static and dynamic art (installed and created on spot)
mediation times (with a combination of screen/music)
movie clips
twitter (on screens in a variety of ways)
man on the street interviews
interactives (this alone requires an entire treatment—participatory, hands-on elements)
music (congregational/feature)
live interview on stage
baptism (in a variety of stagings)
communion (in a variety of stagings)
paneled discussion
group discussion and Q & A
computer terminal testimonies
computer terminal for Q & A
video or phone link ups
surfing websites live for illustrative material
use search engines to generate statistics or illustrative material live.
total facility usage
total site usage
art installation

Finally, the argument over the use of secular music, movies, and art in church is a non-issue for us. We firmly believe in the much used statement, “all truth is God’s truth.” All art—secular and otherwise (though we resist such delineation)— has the potential to illuminate, bolster, and augment the truth of God’s Word as well as creating dialogue. This is a method of teaching and sharing that is not new to us but is prevalent in scripture and was used by Jesus, the Apostle Paul and many others.

Furthermore, since art is not worship but rather, is a vehicle through which we may worship or reflect or respond to God, we should not have an opportunity to confuse motive for using such art. If a song is “performed” in The Cue space, it should never be suspect as “non-worshipful.” His truth permeates art and culture and often times secular art is a more applicable and honest statement that can be used to surface a need to know, create discussion, set a mood, present a situation, resonate with a person’s current circumstances, cause us to question, answer a question, provoke thought, and move a heart.

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