Thom Rainer starts out his blog post, Nine Steps to Using Social Media and Blogs Without Losing Your Ministry, with:
As in any practice, there are extremes. Some pastors and staff steadfastly refuse to get involved in technology, social media, or blogs. On the other extreme, some ministers misuse and abuse the helpful tools and media available to them.
Let’s re-word this:
“As in any practice, there are extremes. Some Christians steadfastly refuse to get involved in technology, social media, or blogs. On the other extreme, some Christians misuse and abuse the helpful tools and media available to them.”
Blogging and Social Media aren’t just for the Christian professionals, writers, pastors or ministry people. Matthew 28 exhorts all of us to get involved in missions and evangelism. No one is exempt. Jesus saved your life. Why wouldn’t you want to give that life-saving message to others?
So I have re-titled his blog to read, “Nine Steps to Using Social Media and Blogs For Christian Evangelism Without Losing Your Mind or Soul.”
Take an objective audit of your social media usage:
- How many selfies do you take?
- How many times do you play candy crush?
- How much of your social media is dedicated to online “tests” and re-posting posts?
- How much of your social media really reflects who you are spiritually?
- How many times have you posted for other people, because they should see it, but your posts do little to reflect your own humility?
Our public and private life should be one and the same. But how can you serve on social media and retain your soul and mind?
- Choose ONE social media account that you enjoy and be consistent there.
- Every television show has commercials. Engage while you wait for your show to come back from commercial.
- Engage online while waiting in line at the grocery store, at the doctor’s office, etc.
- Use a scheduler like Hootsuite to share the articles you think would be beneficial while you are gone until you can engage again that week online.
The Mormons have already recognized social media as a mission field. Believers, like you and me, are lagging behind. Pastors should encourage their congregation to get involved online in Christian evangelism, have classes in how to witness to different cultures, and teach senior adults to get involved in Christian evangelism through helpful computer classes. We should be arming our people with the Word and sending them out.
I am grateful for companies like the Focus on the Family and The Billy Graham Evangelical Association (and other cybermissions companies) who have been doing online work for years now. Thom’s first point applies to all of us:
Be involved in technology, social media, and blogs. It is missiologically irresponsible not to be. That is where the growing mission field resides, and you need to be among them.
So stop leaving the work to pastors and ministry leaders. Why not get involved with us?