One of the lessons I’ve gleaned since joining the Facebook world is that people probably don’t have a lot of time to park on one post. It seems to me that the platform is designed to allow people to scroll through their timeline and take a peek on what other people are doing and saying. If something grabs your attention, then you can give it more time. If it doesn’t, you can move on to something that does.
As I was mulling over this matter the first of last week, I received an email article from my friend Bill Wilson, Director of the Center for Healthy Churches, who helped us several years ago with our Vision 2020 strategic process. Bill had written on “What We Can Expect to See Less of and More of in Churches in 2020,” and it piqued my curiosity as to how we engage both members and prospects in the “next normal,” given how we are likely looking at a mix of in-person and online gatherings for the foreseeable future, with more participation on the online component than the in-person. I started to think about my need to be doing something on a more regular basis than my once-a-week videos and blogposts in order to keep connecting with people, while respecting their tendencies to scroll through their feeds, giving time only to what they found most helpful.
So, here’s what I’ve decided to do. I’m offering a Monday through Friday daily devotion on our MBBC Facebook page that I’m calling “Have a Minute?” It actually will be somewhere between a minute or two, but no longer. The idea is to post it at 7 a.m. each weekday as a way of offering folk a brief thought that might further their faith development as they begin their day. My hope is that people will find it helpful enough to share it on their personal pages so that our church’s reach might extend exponentially. And when people do feel safe in coming back to gathered worship, maybe even some of those who heard something helpful will want to join us in person for a more complete worship experience.
I actually experimented with this daily devotion idea last week, and I was shocked at the number of views I received without any promotion at all, which speaks volumes as to the new ways we glean information today. That response let me know that this approach is most definitely a viable one for our church’s witness in the coming days.
So, I invite you to go to our church’s Facebook page and check out some of those early devotions and then follow along daily to support the effort. You can also help by being one of those who share it on your timeline so that we can continue to reach people beyond the ones who already follow our church page.
We talk a lot about stewardship in terms of money, which we should always do. But if this type of ministry exemplifies a faithful stewardship of time in terms of our response to God’s mission, then it will have been most definitely time that was well spent.
“Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12).