When I started working at my current church, I inherited a sound system glitch. A quiet buzzing sound came through one of our aux channels known as mix-5. From day one mix-5 had this buzz, and no amount of troubleshooting on my end could fix it. I switched out or tested literally every cable and connection, but for some reason, it still had a buzz. I even had four other sound guys that were much more experienced and knowledgeable than I try to figure it out. One of these guys was even a systems engineer for a world-famous band. None of us had any success.
Community is Key for Success
In previous churches I have worked in, I was able to troubleshoot buzzing in minutes. Still, for some reason this mix-5 buzz eluded me. Every day I would walk by the wedge that was assigned to mix-5 and hear that buzz. It made me feel like a failure as a sound guy. In my mind, the first 15 months I had been working there was 15 months of shame to my profession.
Eventually, a hunch by another highly experienced audio engineer led me to the problem, and I was able to fix it. It involved a complicated re-soldering of connections coming out of our soundboard, but the problem was fixed. Now when I walk by mix-5, I stop and bask in the silence of no buzz. It is a feeling of triumph knowing I conquered a brick wall that had been in my way for 15 of the last 18 months.
Sometimes a problem will seem like a simple and easy fix, while in reality, we can’t solve it by ourselves. I would not have been able to fix mix-5 had it not been for an audio engineer who had different experiences and a different history than I did. This history and experience led him to a memory of a similar problem he had once experienced. This is proof of how desperately we need community. This is a hard concept for me, as I am an extreme introvert. Despite this, I cannot just disconnect myself from others, from my community. Community is incredibly important in ministry and in life, and as seen in this example, having a community of people to support you in trials and struggles will help you get through life feeling triumphant.