Between here and there.
Two feet planted firmly in reality, two hands typing furiously in virtuality. This is the way my day goes. Today I am leading worship @ Koinonia in Second Life, tomorrow I meet Kim for dinner at Claremont School of Theology. This will be our first “face 2 face” conversation without our avatars present!
Some may think that church in virtuality is simply role playing- but from my experience of the last year, it has not been much different than the role playing we see in real life church.
Life either in Second or Real is what you make it, what you put in to it- and believe me, Kim and I put ourselves into it as Sophianne and Nitrojeen. Our avatars are the virtual representations of ourselves, a bit hip and nerdy, and our names even hint at our unique personas, Sophianne, wise and wonderful and Nitrojeen, strong and sensitive.
As in Real Life, we have our ability to morph into different identities, depending on the situation and mood, but we continue to operate from the core/essence of our being, authentic no matter what form or medium we are ministering in. We lead and minister from that center- and it is transmitted to whichever community we are in; real or virtual. My appearance, interpretation and communiction tools may vary somewhat, but ultimately, it is still just me- typing, speaking, dancing- giving my two cents (and at times more) and trying to make sense of the worlds around and in me.
It will be a blast to share a real cup of coffee and hug with Kim, “ain’t nothing like the real thing” but without Second Life, this reality would not have come to pass. And so I am grateful and amazed that my world is more than just the geography of location, that my ministry can transcend time and space and create new opportunities, relationships and connections with God’s beloved community.
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