Don’t you love getting new things? There’s something magical about opening the box and discovering all the specialness of your new item. It doesn’t even have to be something extravagant or novel. Maybe it’s a lemon zester that is easy to use AND clean. Maybe it’s a pair of earrings you bought for one outfit and you discover they go with several outfits. Maybe it’s a new fountain pen purchased specifically for hand-written gratitude intervention.
My new MacBook Air arrived a few days ago and I’m enjoying discovering all the magic in this beautifully designed piece of hardware. Apple is the master of The Experience. From the plain, brown shipping box to the sleek, white product box and how the item is nested in its product box, you are already in The Experience. Each phase of the opening, unwrapping and starting up reveals a bit more, all leading up your first sensation of using your new Mac product. I’ve purchased several Apple products over the years and the magic never goes away.
The magic makes The Experience fun, but there are some new insights I have that make the experience real.
A new operating system on new hardware is just that … new. Technology upgrades happen for a reason, usually to improve performance and user experience. Personally, I love improved performance and always welcome a better user experience.
Sometimes, however, if the developers haven’t invested enough time and testing in planning and designing the user experience, no amount of magic will win converts. Some people don’t like change of any kind and are resistant to any learning curve. Magic won’t help them either. And there are always those who think hardware is hardware and an operating system is an operating system. Maybe, but they don’t believe in magic anyway so it won’t make much difference to them over the long haul.
I really do believe the user experience is essential, and that goes for faith as well. Faith isn’t an all mental exercise or an all heart experience. It’s a blending of the two that is rooted in both the mind and heart. It’s experimenting with experience and exploring with empathy. There is magic, as well. It is the belief in a power larger than myself (that I call God) that allows me to venture into the unknown and unknowable.
The very last book of the Bible has this verse:
And the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.” ~ Revelation 21:5
God wants the best for creation, of which we are a part. We’re reminded of the newness of creation every spring. Plants go dormant and animals that hibernate to survive the harsh winter months. New blooms and new life emerge each spring. The beauty that colors our landscapes in the spring brings wonder and is a reminder that we’re in a season of newness. God pays particular attention to the faithful’s user experience. It’s even more magical than my new MacBook Air.