For (Your Community) breakout at Orange Conference 2018

Jeff Henderson, campus pastor of Gwinnett Church was the breakout communicator. Gwinnett Church is one of the multisite campuses of North Point Ministries, and it's the first multisite campus to go multisite, which is really, really cool! Jeff worked for Chick Fil A corporate previously before coming on board North Point Ministries 15 years ago. 

Here's my notes from his breakout: 

Grow your church by being known for what you’re for.

Jesus said that He did not come into the world to judge or condemn it. 

Many people are more familiar with what the church is against instead of what the church is for. 

For people to grow, they must discover that God is for them, not against them. Dr. Henry CloudIt’s hard to reach people who don’t like us. 

Shrink the gap between the folks who have their backs against the church. We have more in common with you than you think. 

3 strategies to grow your church by being known for what you’re for

Build common ground

  1. Hold every other team meeting in the community. 

  2. Don’t point out problems. Solve problems. 

  3. Implement three messaging ideas. (T-shirts, car decals, coffee mugs, coffee sleeves)

Create conversation starters

  1. Talk less about your church and more about your community. 

  2. Comment and like more than you post. 

  3. Act like the community has hired your church to promote the community on social media. 

Create community

  1. Highlight people in your community.

  2. Highlight local schools.

  3. Community service days.

  4. Ask, “How can we help?” 

Create a place where someone can belong before they believe.

IMG_2482.JPG

The Power of "Live"

Ministry leader, have you ever thought of the impact you are making in your current setting? I’m sure you have. Most, if not all of us, have. We think about how we can reach “one” more. What sermon series can I preach or what illustrations can I use to help draw more people to the Lord. It’s natural to think that, in what we do. We want to be as effective as we can and for God to get all the glory as only He can. Can I share with you a tool that I’ve been using for a while now that has impacted the ministry I do? It’s the “LIVE” feature of some of our favorite social media networks. 

Let’s look at three of the most popular social networking sites Facebook, YouTube, Instagram. All three of them have multiple things in common, but the one big thing I want to point out is that all three networks have a “Live” option for folks to use. The folks over at mediakix.com discovered this amazing stat: Facebook Live videos are watched 3x longer than regular videos. That stat is pretty amazing.

So, ministry leader, if you are connected on one of these three sites or perhaps sites like Twitter/Periscope or SnapChat, you can expand your reach in some pretty powerful ways. Consider using the power of “Live” once or twice a week. Give your congregation an opportunity to see you in a  different element. Give those who are interested in your ministry a little taste by going “Live” from time to time as opportunities present themselves.  

Six key steps to Building Community within your Organization

Matt Norman recently joined me on my podcast, The World of KidMin Podcast to discuss the idea of Building Community with your Organization. What I intend on doing here is sharing those six key steps and then ask you to listen to the podcast as Matt dives deeper into each of those key steps. 

Here are his six steps: 

  1. Do research virtually and physically about your community
  2. Connect with others within your community
  3. Observe what others are doing within your community 
  4. Find a way to add value to your community
  5. Ask questions in your community
  6. Go deeper in your community 

The podcast offers great insight into these six key steps and I would highly encourage you to give it a listen. 

You can connect with Matt on twitter here or visit his website here.

4 Keys of Successful Outreach- KidMin Style

I have two passions for ministry: children's ministry and outreach. And believe it or not, the two go hand in hand quite a bit.

For a lot of us, we spend months and months out of the year working on the latter of these two ministry areas in hopes of enhancing the other. We visit Facebook groups, look at websites, make phone calls, email perspective KidMin evangelists, book hotel rooms, facilitate a meet and greet; all for the sake of getting a full house one weekend. Our hope is that we would stir some interest in the families who come in for our big events such as VBS or a big-time concert or evangelist, but for the most part, we are just hoping for a full house. I want to share with you four strategic keys that will hopefully not just capture a full house but will produce an increase in attendance for your weekend worship services. 

The first thing we must do when planning an outreach event, whether it be VBS or some other event, we have to determine who TARGET is. Who are you hoping will fill your seats and ultimately come back to your church for a "regular" worship service. Determining that in the beginning is essential in helping make these other three keys work. Your target can be neighborhoods, nearby communities, homes/apartment complexes immediately around your church, etc. It is recommended to have this discussion amongst your church staff or a team of folks within your children's ministry. Get feedback on who folks view the target to be. 

The second key to strongly consider is the METHOD of your event. Is your event going to be a "one night only" type event, is it a week-long VBS, or some other "get folks in the door" type event? Determining your method will likely determine your approach to communicating details about the event. In communicating details about your event, consider using social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to help promote your event. 

The third key to strategic outreach is to have an OUTCOME HOPED FOR category. Simply put, what are you hoping will happen as a result of the event you are putting together. If this is an evangelistic type event, one of the outcomes you are potentially hoping for are for folks to commit their life to Christ at your event or shortly after. If your event is more geared towards just a big night of fun, what are some things that you would consider "wins" with that motive in place. 

The final key for successful outreaches is to REVIEW THE OUTCOME ACHIEVED. Once your event is finished, take some time to review and reflect on the outcome of your event. What were your wins? What areas do you feel need some extra attention to detail as you think ahead to your next outreach opportunity?  

As you work towards planning and organizing any event, work with these four keys in mind at all times. Perhaps even keep a little notebook with these four keys in place for each event and look back on each one as you are planning the next one and then watch at how much easier your events get and how many more wins you get to celebrate!

 

 

When We Are #ForOurNeighbors...

I recently asked a group of folks to complete this statement, "When we are for our neighbors...". It's kind of a bold statement that really requires a bold answer. My intent with this request was twofold: to see how folks viewed their neighbors and to gain some ideas on ways that my church could help further embrace this lifestyle.

I use the word lifestyle because to me, it's just that; a lifestyle. It's a way of living life. Thinking about others needs before my own. The local church reaching beyond it's walls into the neighborhoods it surrounds. An opportunity for families to engage with those that live next door or down the street over or even around the block.  

The responses I received were from predominantly from folks where I currently serve but there was a good bit of response from friends and family in other communities and states. I'd like to share a few of their responses and perhaps encourage you to ask this question of your social media audience or church audience: When We Are For Our Neighbors....

Gary replied with "...their needs become our priority rather than our agenda". Boom, right out of the gate, Pastor Gary Snowden is dropping some great truth for us. We've literally got to put the needs of those around us to show them Jesus. It's got to be able Jesus 100% and not about us.

Justin mentioned that "communities and lives are changed." He's right! It's that simple. Being #ForOurNeighbors has the potential to change whole communities. 

#Kidmin guru Tom Bump inserted "We will do whatever it takes for them to know Jesus". We've got to be willing to get uncomfortable to reach folks!

Amy, a middle/high school teacher wrote, "we are following God's command to love them as ourselves." Be who God created you to be! It's definitely the best you, and your neighbors deserve to see that.

Chad Overton, NextGen Pastor at The Met Church in Houston shared this, "We are being intentionally obedient to God's Word." Our community will see that in us as long as we are being intentional with our actions. 

Several others shared a similar thought "being the hands and feet of Jesus." It's really that simple. Just serving others!

I hope that you've gained some great insight on being #ForOurNeighbors. If you are in any form of family ministry, I'd encourage you to consider attending the Orange Tour as they share more resources and tools for the church to be #ForOurNeighbors. You can learn more at: orangetour.org. They've got close to 30 dates/locations across the US where you and your team can learn more about this impactful initiative.