Fueling a Passion

May 25, 2012

It is arguable that the most interesting people in the world are passionate people. Have you ever see someone who is passionate about playing a guitar play? Or a passionate singer sing? Or what about a passionate evangelist? Maybe that example is a little more rare.

As this article on Evangelism from ChurchLeader.com pointed out, we often think that evangelism is better left to someone in the church. But Jesus didn’t think so. From the beginning of his ministry, Jesus didn’t choose the most scholarly theologically astute men. Instead, the first of his disciples were fishermen. He chose the common, regular, ordinary people to be his closest friends and the first evangelists.

The wonderful thing about the internet is that it is open to the common man. Everyone can minister online- you only need a passion for God. If you are interested in turning your passion for God into ministry, join us June 2 to find out how! We will be talking about everything from what it means to be an online missionary to how to have a powerful prayer life.  You don’t need to be an expert. You don’t have to have it all figured out or even having a seminary degree. You just need to have a willing heart. Just like the disciples of old, Jesus is wanting to use you.

Read With Friends

May 4, 2012

Words with Friends. Draw Something. Mobile apps are allowing us to become more social. Did you know there is now a way to read with friends?  Check it out!

Think of the potential! You can read and share thoughts on the Bible or a Christian classic. There are online Bible studies, yet this app allows a person do go at their own pace and join others as they have time to go through a bible study or another christian growth book.  Along the way they can share their thoughts and insights and bless others.  Friends over great distances can keep in touch and grow spiritually. What other potential do you see?

It’s a celebration!

We are talking about Internet Evangelism Day, of course! Oh? You aren’t familiar with it? Please, allow us to share.

This year on April 29th, Global Media Outreach will be joining together (virtually) for Internet Evangelism Day. This will be a celebrations of online missions. The “event,” so to speak, is put on by The Internet Evangelism Day Coalition. These wonderful people have put together a FREE campaign solely to promote evangelism on the web.  We are excited to join with everyone to promote God using online resources to spread the gospel. We at GMO have a LOT to celebrate this year on April 29th. For example,

  • In 2011 alone 19 million people indicated a decision for Christ
  • We have 7,900 AWESOME online missionaries working with us to respond to our emails
  • AND we have proven fiscal responsibility which allows us to be accredited by the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA).

And we don’t want to just stop there! We want everyone to hear. We would love to have you join us, and all the others as we get the word out about Internet Evangelism. What are you celebrating in online missions? Let us know! We would love to give you a shout out. How are you celebrating? Who can you invite to celebrate this Internet Evangelism Day? The more the merrier.

Let the virtual conga line begin!

Online Survival Guide

April 20, 2012

There is nothing that shows our human fallen nature faster than reading comments on YouTube video. People can express their unsolicited options in the harshest of terms.  Anytime you express yourself or share something you believe in on social media, from fashion to faith, you run the risk of getting some painfully nasty comments. Here are six ways to survive engaging hostile people online:

Image from Fallout Wiki

  1. Prayer: Praying isn’t the “easy way out.” Rather prayer will invite God into the conversation. Ask him to focus you on who/what is really important. (Hint: it isn’t the angry post).  Pray for wisdom and for a response (or non response) that will be pleasing to him.
  2. Do Not Respond: It is so tempting to respond to a person posting the raging ranting, bashing, or degrading comment.  Such comments push our “internal justice button” and we want to tell them all the reasons they are wrong and mean! Usually nothing good comes of responding. As it says in Proverbs 26:4, “Do not answer a fool according to his folly or you will be like him yourself.”  Most times these comments really aren’t personal, so do not view them that way. Instead, if the comment is really ugly, delete it, pray (!) and move on.
  3. Respond: This may seem like a contradiction to the above statement, yet, there will be times when an angry comment is made because the person has been misinformed. In this case, take some time to think about how to respond. Good responses can take some time to formulate so that your tone doesn’t come across as harsh or condescending. Also consider what source or links you might want to provide. Remember you are working to correct the misunderstanding, not to correct the person.
  4. Reserve the Right to Block the Offender- Some people practice a random hatter commenting, and others will persist in their attacks. If you have a person who strongly opposes your online evangelism efforts, you can always block them. Their negative comments don’t only affect you but have the potential to hurt others as well.
  5. Be Honest with Other Christians: Sometimes, even when we try not to take comments personally, one will still get to us. Be open in sharing this with a Christian friend- offline. Let them know what hurt you, and ask for prayer.
  6. Prayer: Again. Seriously. Pray for the person who offended you. It is hard to hold onto anger when you pray for them.

Here are six simple ways to survive a harsh comment online. What else have you found?

Stonewashed Bootcut Gospel?

November 14, 2011

There isn’t a person alive who doesn’t love the fit of an old pair of jeans. Let’s be honest, it isn’t just women who will search high and low for the perfect pair. Now according to an article in Tech Today, there is a body scanner that will tell you your exact size for a perfect fit. Once you have been scanned, you will be able to shop virtually knowing everything recommended to you is a guaranteed perfect fit. This is marketing at it’s finest. Meeting people right at their point of need.

What if we took this same approach to evangelism? No, we are not “selling Jesus.” But we DO want to meet people in their point of need. As Annie, our intern, pointed out this summer “God made everyone different … and He relates to us all differently. God is always and forever the same, but while consistent He’s also dynamic.” Her point was God is the same, but he relates to us each differently because we are different. He fits everyone like a perfect pair of jeans.  So, as online evangelists, we need to use the tools available to us to see what people need so that we can present the gospel in the most relatable way possible. When we really focus in of the  key terms we write into our blogs, the questions we ask on facebook, what trends we look to respond to in twitter we are being more effective at presenting a Jesus who is real to people.

Photo Jeans by Petr Kratochvil

Trends are trendy. People love them. We study them. And, depending on the trend, we follow them. Yesterday I addressed Thom Rainer, the CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources,’s article “5 Major Trends for Churches in America” by looking at how social media can help in sharing the gospel with the Millennial generation. Today Let’s look at another trend he noted:

The Boomer generation will actually be more receptive to the gospel.

They have been there and tried that, and it left them feeling empty. For the Boomer generation, who will not  “accept their senior status“, they will continue to ride the technology trends of their children and grandchildren. We are reaching the place where everyone has a facebook. Even my  grandmother (I mean that literally). In light of this, we can not give up on a generation who once gave up on the gospel. They are more ready and open now than ever before. The more important trend or online missions to the Boomer generation is simply to be present where they are. They will use their smart phones, we should have apps available. They are on facebook, twitter, and other social sites, let’s engage them in a conversation.

As Thom Rainer pointed out, these two generations can not be ignored. They are the two largest generations in American history. Take a moment to realize that we are talking about real people with real spiritual needs. We can not afford be indifferent about this. We must engage these generations online!

Future Evangelism Trends

November 8, 2011

As humans, we love trends. We love knowing what will be “in,” marketable, and profitable. We want to know where to put our money, time, and talent. Where can we get the biggest return for our investment. While we might not be hopping on trends like watching bad reality TV, there are others that we don’t want to miss out on. Investors want to know what would be a wise investment of money. Parents want to be aware of what trend their kids think is “cool” (especially to know if running interference is necessary). And the church wants to know what is the best way to share the gospel with people.

In a recent article, Thom Rainer, the CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources, lays out “5 Major Trends for Churches in America“. Two in particular stand out as important to consider for the future of online evangelism.

The Millennial generation will be indifferent toward Christianity. 

The very opposite of acceptance is indifference. Some people might be tempted to think it is hate. But if someone hates, they still have emotion and thoughts for a subject or person. If they are indifferent, they simply don’t care. Questions like “where will you go when you die” or “why are you here on earth” are dismissed with “I don’t care.” If someone doesn’t care, there can’t even be a conversation.

While people might become indifferent toward Christianity, they STILL care about their relationships. It is this relationship that will open the doors to conversation.  They are the first generation to share so much personal information online. And though it is less likely that they will live in the same town they grew up in, they will continue to be connected online. Social media then becomes all the more important mode of sharing the gospel.  The key to riding the social media trend is to remain authentic. The Millennial generation wants to know that you REALLY care. They want to engage with a REAL person. Therefore Christians need to continue to build a personal authentic social presence to connect and stay connected with people in their lives. Social media can’t be used just to throw christian ideas out there. The Millennial generation already “doesn’t care” about another idea. The most rewarding evangelism trend will be to build authentic relationships online so that they might be granted the privilege of sharing the gospel.

Join us tomorrow as we discover what the second trend is, and how we can address it…


Seeing from the Heart

March 17, 2011

Doug Coyle is blind, but, he is helping others see Jesus clearly!  Check out this cool video about one of our Online Missionaries:

 

 

You can also watch it by clicking on this YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B5fUPQUX5lU

 

 

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