Odd Images for the Kingdom

So, here we are. The first post. Do I start of by admitting it is the first post, or pick up in mid-thought as if nothing ever happened? I suppose it is too late for that now. The first post of any journal is important. Like the first time you meet a person, the first post on a journal can set a lifelong impression. Well, at least I am not alone. I suppose you are meeting this journal for the first time too.

To begin my journal with an overtly Christian theme could set the expectation that this is a Christian journal. And, given the fact that I am a Christian, I suppose that is true. However, my honest intention is only that of sharing.

The event I hoped to share was a recent PowerPoint ordeal. Over the past few years, I have been developing a good friendship with one of our professors. He needed a hand slimming down a PowerPoint presentation that had ballooned to about 16 megs for only 8 slides with a few pictures. I started off by doing the typical “compress pictures,” but this only took it down to 13 megs. So, I hit the Google machine and found an excellent and entertaining article by Steve Rindsberg (http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/powerpoint/ha011168821033.aspx). Unfortunately, it did not help.

As I went through the slideshow, deleting images one at a time and seeing what impact it had on the overall size, I found a picture that was nearly 13 megs all by itself. Why had PowerPoint failed to compress it? Well, it was embedded as an object or a drawing. So, a quick screen capture into the Gimp took care of my problem (remember: friends don’t let friends save as JPEG’s).

The good news is, the PowerPoint slimmed down just in time to be streamed over the web with Elluminate Live by a guest instructor, Terry Lindvall. I was surprised to find that Terry and the other professor, Dr. Robert Woods, replaced the jump drive containing the presentation with a signed copy of Terry’s book, “Sanctuary Media.” Inside the cover, he wrote, “To Jason, who puts odd images together to serve the kingdom.”

As a help desk tech and the guy who pushes the “Next” button on the PowerPoint Sunday mornings, this is an important message to hear. Even for people who do not share my faith. A very simple way of describing what it means to “serve the kingdom” is “helping to bring the world a little closer to the best it can be for all people.” If we truly knew how much of a difference our little behind-the-scene tasks make for every person we come in contact with, we may find ourselves completely shocked. So, my first post is an invitation to look beyond the simple task you perform and at the bigger picture. The impact that you make on others and the impact that others make on you. We are all connected, even through a simple password reset.

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