Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Google For Good & Better World

It seems that I am constantly impressed by Google. The company with a funny name indicating a seemingly infinite number is making a difference unlike any company of which I have knowledge. I and a billion of my closest friends use Google on a daily basis. It's simple search engine is fast, accurate, easy, and the portal to seemingly infinite information.

Then, came Gmail the beta program you had to be invited into, but then was offered as a free limitless storage email. I love it. Whenever something comes along that takes a completely different approach and makes the ordinary tasks of life extraordinarily easy and even fun, I love it.

Then, I caught wind that Google is working to digitize every piece of literature ever written into a super-Google library. This too is an amazing feat and one that will make study, learning, research, and potential growth available to anyone with access to the internet.

Just last month Google announced that they are entering the cell phone industry and will have a Google Phone sometime next year. They are not invested in hardware, per se, but the software that makes accessing the internet and email available to users of cell phones. Their logic is that there are significantly more cell phone users in the world than computer users. So, they will bring the internet simply and efficiently to cell phones.

Then, today while reading my Gmail across my webclips comes an article about Google pursuing renewable energy. They are investing millions upon millions of dollars in renewable energy. Sure it is for lowering their own corporate energy costs. However, most Wall Street observers think the move is sheer insanity and a case of a company trying to do too much. Many guess that Google will outreach its ability to produce. While their name represents an infinite number of zeros and seems to mirror their net worth, their goal is not making money. What? A huge multi-billion dollar company is not in it for the cash? No wonder Wall Street frowns and shakes a discouraging finger.

Get this. In 2004 when they went public with their initial public stock offering, founders Page and Brin wrote to investors:
"Our goal is to develop services that significantly improve the lives of as many people as possible. In pursuing this goal, we may do things that we believe have a positive impact on the world, even if the near-term financial returns are not obvious."
The bold italics are my addition to highlight their stunning assertion, which means "it is not about the money." They are focused on positively improving life for as many as possible. Wow! What if everyone had that as a goal? Think of the impact that one person could make who was willing to give their life - even painful embarrassing death - for the good of as many people as possible. It sounds like a hint of a faith I could really hang onto tightly. Sacrifice some of our perks, power, hours, and cash so that others could see seismic difference in their lifestyle.

The story of Jesus (and those who follow him) has green reproductive power even today. If people of faith will get out of mere sermon listening and into changing the world, then life would be better for more people. Don't get me wrong, this is not a "rah-rah" chant for human potential. I think it can only happen on the shoulders of a God who stretched his arms wide in love of the world (the whole world), but he also accomplishes it through you and me and Google. God is bringing all things to their perfection in Jesus. I am ready to follow him.