A "MEDIA" Revival -by Andrew Strom. I want to talk today about something that has deeply provoked me for many years. It is something at the forefront of much of my thinking about Reformation, Revival, and the coming shape of the church. It is something that God draws my attention to again and again. This subject is THE MEDIA - how vital it is - and how God wants to use it. I don't know if you have thought much about this, but we live in a world today in which one country - America - creates the vast majority of films, music and television that is seen and heard around the world. And the devil has gone to great lengths to "own" as much as possible of this output. America is a 'Christian' country (-a whopping 40% of Americans attend church regularly and around 80% of Americans claim to be "born again") - yet the values and the culture that Hollywood exports to the world is the EXACT OPPOSITE of what this majority of Americans believe. I am a New Zealander who now lives in America. And I want to tell those of you from other countries that if you judge America by her films or TV, then you are completely deceived as to the real state of things here. There is a vast "heartland" in America that truly despises and rejects the sickness of Hollywood. And yet what has happened is that the devil has been allowed to control the Arts and the media outlets - so that, in effect, America has become a great "transmitter" of the devil's poison to the world. Hollywood is allowed to preach her values to our youth all day long. And slowly he is gaining their hearts and minds. Despite the mass of Christians in this country, the devil has been allowed to turn America (-particularly the creative communities of the East and West coasts) into one great 'cesspool' of a propaganda machine - to corrupt and destroy the youth of the earth. And that is exactly what he is doing. You can go to Eastern Europe, to Africa, to Asia, to every part of the globe - and there you will find American TV and "Hollywood" culture dominating the thinking of the youth. It is everywhere - all pervasive. It is the devil's candy machine. I have to say, it truly astonishes me that the Christians in this country have allowed such a thing to occur. -Their own country being used as a staging post for the devil's greatest advances. Like a lot of things, the "revolution" occurred very suddenly in the late 1960's - and caught everyone by surprise. But the saddest thing is that there has been no "come-back" by the Christians. In the Arts, the U.S church has largely retreated into it's own little 'ghetto' - with it's own music labels, radio and TV stations, etc - and has left the devil to preach to all the earth from it's very own coasts. And thus, America - this 'Christian' nation - has become one of the greatest allies that the devil has ever known. I tell you, friends, it is high time for a COUNTER-REVOLUTION. As I said earlier, this is a topic that has consumed a great deal of my thinking for years and years. How can God be glorified in the earth? I am totally convinced that the coming Reformation and Revival must TAKE THE MEDIA as well as the streets. This is major territory that has GOT to be re-taken for God, I believe. As many of you know, I have been involved in various forms of media for many years - so this is not "abstract" theory for me. It is something that I live with every day. And I know that right now we are failing God. So how on earth can that change? Well, one thing we need to be aware of is that we are living in the midst of a massive 'revolution' in technology - which can greatly aid our cause. I have a background in video production, and in New Zealand I made about a dozen TV commercials on behalf of Christian events, etc. Most of these were very low-budget, but even so, many of them were up to Network Television standard. -This is because the quality of even the 'cheaper' video formats today has gotten higher and higher. (It is all about the "look", anyway). In the end, I was shooting and editing entirely on 'digital'. -And the costs were extremely low. I made music videos, commercials and even a 5-part television show - most of which were shown on secular TV. -All for next to nothing. -Because of TECHNOLOGY. Do you realize that the most recent Star Wars movies were not shot on film - but on High Definition (digital) video? And do you realize that there has been a REVOLUTION in High Definition video this year - so that cameras that would have cost $30,000 a couple of years ago now cost just $3000? (-I am talking about the new Sony FX1 and the like). What does this mean? It means that for almost nothing I can now shoot and edit a high-quality FEATURE FILM. Yes - MOVIE THEATER standard. And the same revolution also means that I can digitally record MUSIC much cheaper than the old technology would allow. I tell you, this digital revolution is just CRYING OUT for us to use it to bring GLORY to GOD in a way that has never been seen before. But it is not enough for one individual to do this. There must be a MOVEMENT of film and music and so-on. -Just like the "revolution" of the 1960's. There was a movement of art and music and film back then that utterly overthrew the culture of the time. I believe God wants to do this again - except in reverse. -This time it will GLORIFY HIM. And He wants to do it SOON. I just turned 39 the other day, and I have been doing a lot of pondering about what my true calling is in life and what God most wants me to do. There is so much I COULD be doing - but what is the main thing? For years and years I have thought about the MEDIA and the call to GLORIFY GOD in our day. I have thought about His desire for great CHANGE in the church and great CHANGE in the way Christianity is presented to the world. All of this points me again and again to the MEDIA as a major calling in my life. I have often dreamed of a creative "nerve center" where we bring together young Christian radicals and artists - ultra-skilled in the digital worlds of video, CGI, music and editing. A place where Truth and the Glory of God are made real for the screens and radio-sets of this generation. A production house - a "hit factory" aimed at all the earth. People may scoff and say that this is a pipe-dream - that it would "cost millions". Well, no - not any more. And it is no pipe-dream to me, because I am already familiar with most of these areas and I can see how feasible it would be. If the world can do it, then why not God? -Especially now that most of this could be done in one simple facility on computers. Is not the Lord of Glory more "creative" than the devil? Is not America the 'propaganda' center of the earth? Is not film and music the new 'language' of youth everywhere - even China and Eastern Europe? So why do we leave it up to the DEVIL to do most of the effective communicating? What is lacking in so much 'Christian' output these days is artistry and vision and flair. I cannot believe the cliched and hackneyed stuff that is often trotted out by the Christian church. Only Mel Gibson's "Passion" had enough impact to affect the culture. But there are MANY Christians out there who are ultra-gifted by God in these areas. One day soon I believe there will be a "coming-together" - where prophet-preachers find themselves alongside anointed song-writers, producers and film-makers. Who knows how it might happen? -But a MEDIA REVIVAL there must be. The fact is, what God is calling us into in this hour is a RE-INVENTING of Christianity - back to how it is supposed to be. The impressions the world has of us and our God are SO WRONG. True Christianity is nowhere to be seen on their radar-screens. This has got to change. And I believe it is precisely this RE- INVENTING that God wants to use the media for. This is a huge part of what is about to happen, I believe. A great tidal-wave of CHANGE is coming. And just like the 1960's I believe that much of it will be advanced and heralded by a new generation of artist-prophets, musicians and 'media-radicals'. But this time they will be on the Lord's side. In practical terms, what this means for me is that I have a ten-minute "Internet-Documentary" and also a 90-minute Feature Documentary now in pre-production. And we are in 'development' of a Feature story-script and the music to go with it. But the major purpose of this article is really to inspire YOU. There are so many people that God is calling into this. For those who have a calling in this area, or who want to support this kind of thing - NOW is the time to move. I believe this whole area is opening up at this moment in a way that is unprecedented. And God is looking for people who will press forward through this opening - to utterly glorify Him. Be encouraged, my friends. Get involved! God bless you all, Kindest regards in Christ, Andrew Strom.