Widgets Or Art?


Widget makers value consistency.

Every widget must be exactly alike, so the factory thrives on rules and procedures designed to produce conformity. On the assembly line it’s about interchangeable parts and elimination of individualism, freedom, creativity. Not a value judgement, just what’s required to produce consistently high-quality widgets.

The FREEDOM TOUR is more art studio than factory. We work to create a space where folks can experience relationship as they sacrifice for a common cause. It’s about as far from widget-making as you can get.

Of course we need some level of consistency. Life on the road requires processes to accomplish routine tasks and leave time for essential activities. You can’t have an every-man-for-himself approach to cycling in groups. We need good directions. So we develop and discuss principles that encourage freedom and individual expression within a context of servant leadership.

Sometimes I forget. I think that after doing this a bunch of times we ought to be able to replicate last year, sort of put it on auto-pilot. And I can, with forms and schedules and widget-type stuff.  Logistics is essentially an engineering problem, tackled and solved with software and spreadsheets.

Mostly, though, it’s art – unique every time because God didn’t create people in a factory. Relationships don’t develop on an assembly line.

Making art is risky. Never know what you’ll get, probably won’t be what you expected. Safer to make widgets.

Jesus never talked about safe.

Please leave a comment.