Reaching the biggest mission field on earth
The Lord Jesus was a people person. His ministry was about building relationships and touching lives with His grace, mercy, and love. He met people where they were—at a well, by a pool, on a road—and those who truly connected with Him were never the same. The apostles were devoted to the same relationship building. They went into the synagogues and market places and endured much hardship in the mission of spreading the gospel. Men and women down through the centuries have gone to great lengths to fulfill the Great Commission by reaching people where they were. With technology came tools such as radio and television, enabling Christians to go further and reach millions more for Christ.
With the explosion of the internet, the mission field for any Christian or church can now extend to over a billion souls. Facebook alone has over 500 million users with over 50% logging in every day. A local church can use Facebook as a vital supplement to the traditional methods of outreach. Facebook is also a place to edify Christians around the world. Here are four key ways your church or ministry can use Facebook in a positive way to reach the masses with the gospel and to encourage the family of God.
1. Reaching the community.
Depending on the location of your church or ministry, there are potentially thousands of people nearby. The most powerful aspect of Facebook is that friends are connected to friends. This means the reach is vast. Posting events and sharing the gospel can lead to more visitors to your website and outreaches. As the word spreads, others will be interested and can see what you are all about. Setting up a Facebook page (different from Facebook groups) is a great way to reach the community. This is not private and can be found by people in your neighborhood.
2. Global prayer.
When the apostle Peter was in prison, a small group of believers was praying and the Lord delivered him. Can you imagine the power of thousands, maybe millions, of people petitioning the throne of grace? I have personally prayed for people I have never met because of Facebook. Prayer for missionaries can be expanded by giving more Christians the knowledge of ministries all over the world.
3. Share the work.
Your local church or ministry has something to give to the universal church. Share your ideas in evangelism, ministry, and encouragement. If you are having a series of meetings, record them in audio or video, post them on your website, and share with others so they can gain the blessing as well. There are endless possibilities concerning how you can be used by God to spark interest in other churches and ministries.
4. Internal communication.
Facebook is a great way to keep the Christians in your fellowship up-to-date and connected with each other. By setting up a Facebook group, believers can interact, be reminded of events going on, post prayer requests, and encourage one another. Thorold South Gospel Chapel is a great example of this. They have a private internal group that only those in fellowship can access. They share events, verses, and prayer requests with each other. Specific ministries and programs such as Awana, kids’ clubs, youth groups, and men’s and women’s groups can make good use of Facebook groups.
Remember the principles of the Lord’s dealing with people—kindness and compassion—and apply those same principles to your interactions on Facebook. Let’s keep in mind the words of Colossians 3:17, “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”