We only started hearing that term around ten years ago. Now we hear it fairly often. “Virtual Reality” is a term given for ‘an artificial environment experienced through sights and sounds generated by a computer that mimics an actual experience’. The technology has come a long way in a short time and is advancing at warp speed. You can, with the computers help, fly a plane or a helicopter without ever leaving the ground, or even take a visual trip through the human body. Pretty amazing stuff, huh?!
But as amazing as the technology is……when I hear the term, ‘virtual reality’, it makes me want to give my own definition. My definition is simply this: “Almost real”. It appears real. It feels real. It can cause the same emotions and reactions as the real thing……but it’s just not real!
We should be careful these days to make sure that the church is not just a church of “virtual reality”! Most everyone wants their church experience to be without problems, snags and negative happenings of any kind. That’d be great with me too……but it ain’t reality!! The truth of the matter is that there’s all kinds of problems in any church. As people…..we’re pretty flawed (sorry if that hurts your feelings!), and in our process of being ‘renewed’ we make all kinds of mistakes and blunders. And when we come together on Sunday, there’s a whole house full of messed up people.
We could try to fake it (…and most do!!) and act like we don’t have a problem one,……but that would be “Virtual Reality”, almost real. Or…..we could see it, and live it out, as it really is. You can always look around the room (in church) and find somebody more ‘messed up’ than you. Although most of the time when I do that….I can’t seem to find anyone that fits the bill! But you know what?? It’s REALITY!!
Next time you go to church (hopefully that’ll be soon) and look around and everything appears wonderful, meticulous with everything just ‘oozing’ perfection, “Heads up!!” …….you’re experiencing “Virtual Reality”. If, on the other hand, everyone is obviously far from perfect and both you and them have problems that look like they’re too big to overcome……
Congratulations!! You have found the “REAL THING’!!