Info for Change

Page history last edited by PBworks 15 years, 8 months ago

The 'Wiki Encyclopedia of CityReaching' is collaboratively sponsored by the 'Center For Urban Innovation'... "Producing Innovative Multicultural CityReachers."


Information... for Change?


"Quality information helps us know what to do NEXT."


 [Also see 'Media Center'... optimizing distribution of quality info.]




During the 'information explosion'.... 


What is the MOST IMPORTANT 'INFORMATION'... for change?


  • God's inspired written communication to us... the Word of God.  Without it, we would be left to (only) our opinions... which would result in pure chaos.  With it, we know much much more about the Almighty and what He desires for us.  "All scripture is God-breathed and suitable for.... "  Specifically, the GOOD NEWS via communicated truth.  "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. And how can they hear without a preacher?"  What is being 'born again', if not radical change?  What role did 'information' play in that transformation in YOUR life?  Importantly, expediting the spreading of the Word of God on the so-called 'information highway' would seem to be an important strategy; yes?  Scripture communicates 'hope'... Romans 15.  Standing on God's promises.  "Make a statement.".... ie, stand for the right... eg. prolife... anti-abortion... even if you really have little hope of laws changing etc.  Somebody has to speak up on behalf of the defenseless.  Your 'standing out loud' may encourage others to do that and even more.  Start a positive change-reaction.  Where would civil-rights be today, if not for someone(s) standing out loud?  It's a 'watchtower' sort of concept -- we're called to be proclaimers of truth, even without apparent effect.
  • Info re EFFECTIVENESS... ie, What's the score?  Research, Assessments & Reporting.   Reconnaisance information... research... spying out the land... so you'll know what to do Next.  And remember, exaggeration of the data can lead to fearful people... "There are giants in the land.  We were like grasshoppers among them."   But good reconnaisance means you'll see people's needs... and some good ideas along the way... and together, you create God-given solutions.  Assessments... ie, 'scoring for change'... ie, objectively assessing whether we are or are not actually carrying out the Great Commission in our communities -- would that research data actually translate into action and change?  Is new information sometimes the driver of repentance and change?  And btw, how good is this information if not reported to 'the team'?
  • How shall we PRAY intelligently?
  • What 'CARE' needs to be shown in tangible ways?
  • How shall we SHARE the Good News?  Where and with whom?
  • Training Info... 'How-To' Information... Training for important tasks ahead.  This could easily include training 'e-capable' Christians.  Discussion & Sharpening.    How do any of us change, anyway?  (personally or corporately).  It has been said that "we will be only what we are, but for the people we meet and the books we read".  Especially diverse information.  Or challenging major assumptions -- which would help create the greatest (positive) change if corrected.  And isn't that what sanctification is all about?  Lifelong change... into the image of His Son?  (Rom. 8)
  • Info for CONNECTING the body of Christ.  Does information serve to expedite 'connecting' the Church in a better, more biblical configuration than we see today in America?  Information correcting misinformation (eg. stereotyping).  This type of info seems particularly important in our day because the devil seems to have had way too much success at dividing us, and then propagating disinformation causing us to hate or dislike people not in our homogenous group.  Social networking sites are perfect for this, and there are a ton of Christian sites.  But as far as we know, none purport to try to go further than simply social-interaction among believers.  So Facebook "City Reaching Movement" seems to be the only centralized connecting point at this moment... aimed toward making a difference, city by city, neighborhood by neighborhood.
  • Coordination of Team-Members...  Think of a successful sports-team, say the Colts -- how important is it for them to communicate perfectly in order to execute perfectly?  In fact, Peyton Manning and his guys have it down to a science... calling what appears to be a million 'audibles' at the line of scrimmage.  Communicating among team-members tells everyone what each person is doing (ie, their status) and what each is committed to doing.  That helps ME tay on track toward my piece of the puzzle... ie, know what to do next.   Eg... Indy Timeline is the only centralized page showing the designated collaborative 'plays' (actions) that we currently have.  So when you get down to the bottom line... everything else is just prepatory 'talk'.  Indy Timeline is the defacto action plan.
  • Relevant News... Needs... Now!   What's going on in our world.  Important to us... and to our neighbors.  Urgent needs?  Long-term needs?  Information facilitates PRAYING for change.  Does better information play a role in our prayer life?  Eg... praying about (proverbial) 'Aunt Nellie's toe'... vs. praying about citywide unity of 'Christ-followers' -- does better, more timely, information actually change anything?




Examples of New Media for Urban Change?



Discussing these questions and deriving some good answers which really WILL change lives & communities... is a goal of the 'Center For Urban Innovation', as we seek to optimally train cityreachers.   See Unit #3 -- Social Impact of Technology & Internet.



From Jon Swanson, Levite Chronicles:

Figuring out what we mean by information is what makes us wonder whether or not it really matters for changing anything. If it is raw data, then that can be helpful, but for what. On the other hand,

  • If information is stories, if what happens on a day like July 24 is that a team of people gathers and repeats stories of how individual people met other individual people and found out that the love of God brings about real behavior, then we call those testimonies and we are supposed to give those.
  • If information is stories, then we realize that the Israelites were told to tell the stories of what God had done so that subsequent generations would remember God's love and power.
  • Paul tells Timothy (2 Tim 2:2) to take the things that he had learned form Paul and pass them on to others who could teach them. In fact, Paul tells Timothy in 2 Tim 3:10 to look at his (Paul's) whole life and experiences as evidences of God's transforming power.
  • Some of the spiritual gifts are telling gifts as opposed to doing gifts. As a result, if some of us AREN'T talking and teaching and picturing, we aren't using our gifts.
  • Social networking tools are for relationship building, if they are used right. So using these tools is an extension of how we interact in real life: a facebook page and all the conversations there with twitter and flickr and some of the other interactions are ways to extend conversations across time and distance (for example, I'm writing to people about a workday in Indy from a porch in Tennessee.)
  • People are changed by stories, the Gospel is a story, my life is a story of how God takes a person and changes him.

In short, if we don't have communication teams as part of work days, we are falling far short of the significance the day can have for eternity. (jon swanson)



From Jim A...

"I've discovered in my short video career that people react to and are motivated by seeing needs in other people, and seeing such people as ordinary, hard-working and worthy of help. I suppose they can be inspired by other things such as building projects, college course offerings, etc., but what really touches a nerve is seeing how other deserving people are being helped in their need.  It opens the door for consideration of action to respond to the need, be it contributing funds (from foundations, corporations, individuals), joining in prayer and action networks, or whatever (?) Jesus went about helping needy people (all of us!), and I think he could bless promotional efforts that followed in his steps."



From Neil C...

'Advocacy'.  Info-4-change could (and should) also include spreading good information pervasively throughout the Church corroborating biblical teachings not well heard in the (American) Church such as... the multicultural Church -- the only 'body of Christ' spoken of in the New Testament.  If we the Church find ourselves greatly deficient in this matter (and 95% of Christian churches do fail this test), then getting the information widely spread, speaking to the hearts of people via the scriptures, is indeed a significant form of 'info-4-change'.  Advocates use information to change hearts, minds & actions.  In the digital age, this often means using USERS using new media to advocate via blogs, photo-blogs, podcasting, social-networking and viral videos to compellingly advocate for truth.  Move people's consciences... to action.  Example:  Go visit or join a church of a different racial composition.  That's info-4-change.



From Neil Cox...

Another variety of information -- honest, objective ASSESSMENT info -- helps us know which direction to go in the future... personally or corporately.

Research/Assessment is a key ingredient for the Change process.  I fondly call it 'Scoring 4 Change'.  Example:  The scoring element of basketball helped it quickly develop from just shooting at a peach basket... into the sport it is today.  Likewise, the 'box score' helped baseball quickly become the All American game.    Question is... which metrics (measurements) help us progress in the BEST direction?   Example:  ___% of adults in OUR city holding/practicing a 'Biblical Worldview'?    [ref: CityReaching Research]



From Max Torres, Houston, TX...

"in a word: CALENDARS It would be great to keep from stepping on each others resource use so we can develop a more thorough flow in the community. The PBWiki's could be a good place to start."



From Phil MigliroattiCity Impact Roundtable ...

Information has been, in the religious world at least, used primarily for instruction. The assumption is that by knowing the right information you will perform the correct behaviors. We are realizing, however, information has the potential to both inspire and provoke interaciton ... which often leads to implementation of something better or different than what existed before the flow of information. This new perspective recognizes that information, even true-truth information, is not static. And not proprietary to leaders only; that once was possible but not any longer.


From Robert Talbert, College Instructor, Indianapolis 

"Being mostly web-based in nature, Web 2.0 apps are portable and don't require much hardware. So people can access information from anywhere there's a network connection and don't need to spend so much money on hardware."


From Neil Cox...

Easy access to important information enhances the likelihood of using best-information.  Illustration... Here's an IndyStar story re Poverty Stats (which are very important).  Unfortunately, they failed to mention at least one important dynamic contained in the underlying stats -- the dramatic difference between 'married' families vs. any other portion of the overall poverty stats.   Nor did they link their article to the underlying stats for anyone to quickly drill-down for greater insights such as this.  Thankfully, because we live in an age where searching out such stats is readily achievable, e-capable Christians can now readily find themVisit the Research wiki-page herein for some important links... And add ones you know.  And btw notice... e-capable Christians not only can better know truth, they can also now PUBLISH truth.


From Neil Cox...

Example of how 'information for CONNECTING'... changes things.  Visit Youth Transition Network.


[SAVI Conference Speaker]

Information + Planning + Action = Power.






Stray ItemsYet To Consider...


  • Related wiki-page... "Overcoming Objections To Technology".
  • ProvPlan:  "Ideas to Action"... re Information For Change.
  • Balanced Scorecard motto:  "Translating Strategy Into Action"   [or... "You get what you measure... and little else."]
  • Geo info?  (think SAVI)  Neighborhood info.  Neighbors know more about what's going on in their neighborhood... than we do.
  • Irony... neighbors taking action builds neighborhood value... and thus eventually... gentrification.  Hmmmm.
  • SAVI speaker... "The Monopoly Board"... find a way to graphically get people's attention.  [They did a flowchart of the complaint system to the mayor's office... and ultimately getting weeds cut and problem cured.  The mayor changed the system immediately, as a result of seeing the ridiculous graphic.  Similarly... remember the pastor's comment who said "NEVER show an expenses pie-chart ever again!".  Pictures speak loudly.  Videos often speak even more loudly.
  • Digg your community?
  • Maybe an interesting assignment would be for students to review some books of the Bible, especially trying to discern the author's intended purpose(s) for 'writing' them.  John, for instance was quite clear... "I write these things because...".   Or study one of the epistles... say II Corinthians, Chapter 1... and list a number of things the writing may accomplish.
  •  Your thoughts anyone???


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