Imagine the internet like a big city, with all the good and bad of big cities — places to buy food, order new clothes, watch movies, hang out with friends, play games and places to get involved in whatever lewd ideas your mind can come up with.
In the middle of all of that, sits your church with its website and social media accounts. Your church has the opportunity to be a “town built on a hill that cannot be hidden”. It has the chance to shine light into the world around it.
You might be wondering how your church can sit like a town on a hill in the online space. How can you make a difference in the online space? The answer is intentionality.
How to make a difference in the online space
If you’re ready for your church to make a difference in the online space, the starting point is to ask yourself, why does our church exist. When you start with understanding your church’s “why”, you’ll have greater clarity in what you should do online to reflect the love of Jesus.
A few ideas of ways you can get started (after understanding your church’s “why”) are:
- Post encouraging and inspiring messaging on the church’s social media accounts
- Livestream programming, like church services, cooking classes, useful webinars and prayer meetings
- Minister around a need (using the online space as a tool), for example, providing online seminars on topics like “Parenting in the Digital Age”, “Managing Your Finances” and “How to Cook Healthy and Tasty Food”
- Make your church a house of prayer. We’ll share more ideas about what this looks like in the next section of this article
A house of prayer
In Matthew 21:12-13, when Jesus gets angry because people are desecrating the temple by making it into a marketplace, he tells us what the purpose of the church should be. He says, “My house should be called a house of prayer.”
How can you make your church a house of prayer in the digital space?
Here are a few ideas we think your church can use to get started
- Livestream prayer sessions on your social media accounts
- Allow people to submit prayer requests
- Share answers to prayer online
- Speak in faith about the power of prayer and
- Share ideas on how people can pray effectively
Providing a consistent place of prayer in the online space has the ability to be life-changing!
The Digital Discipleship Ecosystem
The digital discipleship ecosystem has the opportunity to be a powerful tool for your church. You can learn more about it in our article, “What’s the Digital Discipleship Ecosystem.
As a church, you have the strongest ability to act within the Digital Discipleship Ecosystem because you have many people with different skills and abilities who can minister in their areas of giftedness. When you bring these people together to work on a common project, the results can be brilliant.
For example, in the Digital Discipleship Ecosystem there are:
- Visionaries – Visionaries start new projects, develop ministry ideas and think of innovative ways to minister to the people who need to be reached.
- Content Creators – Creators are our creatives who write, take photos, record videos, animate, draw, sing and do many other creative things.
- Content Distributors – Distributors are those who get the content in front of the people who need to see it.
- Content Engagers – Engagers are people who are skilled at having conversations around the content that’s been distributed. They challenge thinking, provide comfort, give love and bring people closer to Jesus through their interaction with those around them.
- Content Curators – Curators are like museums. They’re skilled at bringing the best and most relevant content together in one place.
- Good Neighbours – Good Neighbours carry out acts of kindness both online and in person.
- Influencers – Influencers can be content creators, distributors or engagers, however, influencers recognise that the words they say online can have a larger impact on a wider group of people than the average digital disciple and therefore they have more responsibility to be accountable for what they do and say online and in-person.
- Supporters – Supporters are those who provide financial, material and emotional support to ministries and churches as they carry out the front line work in the digital space.
Now that you’ve learned a bit about how digital discipleship can be adapted at the church level, you may wonder how your church can get started.
We have prepared a guide for you, which will present you (and your team) with a series of questions to answer in preparation for setting-up a digital discipleship ministry at your church.
Download our guide to learn how to:
- Empower your members to get involved in the church through digital discipleship
- Allow the creatives and the techies in your church to get involved in ministry at the church
- Meet the needs of the local community around a digital need
How to Set-up a Digital Discipleship Ministry at Your Church
In this guide you’ll be presented with a series of questions to prepare you and your team to set-up a digital discipleship ministry at your church. You will also learn how a digital discipleship ministry can help your church fulfil its mission.