What is the Greatest Innovation?

Hannah Sanderson March 28, 2023 0 3
What is the Greatest Innovation?

What is the Greatest Innovation?

by Hannah Sanderson


Hannah Sanderson of the Church of Scotland blogs about innovation,

resurrection, trying again, and having fun!


Fire? Language? The Engine? Digital Code?

All of these things changed the course of human history. All of them had far reaching consequences for humanity.

But surely the greatest innovation of all was the resurrection of Jesus Christ. An event that changed the course of the world for all of time.

Death had always been inevitable. Death had the final word but not anymore. 2,000 years ago, Jesus proved that death too was a divine creation, part of the nature’s cycle yes, but God was the author and source of these truths. Jesus commanded the waves and wind, the tree and the water. Nature obeyed him — Jesus, Lord of Lords and King of Kings.

In the death of Jesus we find new life for all. Our ransom paid, our freedom redeemed, our relationship with God set right.

Jesus told his friends "The hour has come for the Son of man to be glorified. Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.”

Jesus is not in the resuscitation business but the resurrection business. Sometimes things need to die before the next can come into being.

What innovation is Jesus asking you to consider? Sometimes we are so busy keeping things alive that we simply do not have the time to develop the next things on the horizon. We do not even have the time to dream.

Church is always reflecting and reforming. God may not change but church does. As it was right to be a nomadic tabernacle and also right to be a settled temple so we must look for where God is now. If we only ever look back, at where we once encountered God, we might miss a new direction.

Innovation is happening all over the church: Wherever there is personal passion there is energy and wherever there is energy there is hope.

Perhaps it is time to look for the pockets of personal motivation in your community. What are people excited about, what do they prioritise – is it football, good food, film, music, reading? Sometimes we have to go with the flow, follow the cloud: Find out what God is already doing and join in.

Innovation might already be part of your culture but if it is not it can be hard to start thinking in new ways. What does a culture of innovation look like, feel like?

One thing for sure is that we can get better at trying. Try, reflect, try again. Often ideas don’t fail, they flex. And in all that flexing we need to have some fun. Lorenzo Lebrija, Founder of TryTank (Experimental Laboratory for church growth and innovation) says if you are not having fun STOP and try something different.

We have created a free resource for all — Culture of Innovation Learning Module Film. The five sessions can be worked through at home with a small group or pull people together for a fun and interactive day conference.

We have also created a lively ecumenical community to discuss innovation - please do join our Facebook Group – Culture of Innovation for Churches Across Scotland.