Digital Missionary: A New Kind of Missionary

Who is a Missionary? A Christian missionary is commissioned by the Lord to make disciples, followers of Christ. Jesus commands all Christians to share the Gospel, the message of His death and resurrection that conquered the penalty and power of sin.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20).

So we are called to go and make disciples and honestly, in today’s world, we have a unique way to help people from all over the world come to know Jesus without ever leaving our house. How is that? By becoming a Digital Missionary.

I can’t remember when or where I first heard the term, Digital Missionary, but from the moment I heard it, I feel in love knowing that being a Digital Missionary was just for me. And it can be just for everyone else as well.

What is a Digital Missionary?

A Digital Missionary is simple in theory. It is someone who uses technology and digital tools to reach people with the Gospel of Christ. For instance, you could be someone who uses social media effectively, engaging with other people online. What does that look like? It involves sharing your life with others but also celebrating with others for their big moments. The less you can make it about you and more about liking and commenting on other people’s stuff the more trust and good will you will establish with others. And that will help you be able to share about Christ to others when the time is right.

Another example of a digital missionary is a photographer. Look what the guy who started Humans of New York did. He just started posting pictures of people in NYC on Facebook with their stories and it went viral. Doing this kind of work could also be considered content creation as well, but the bottom line a photographer has a unique opportunity to share about Christ through pictures and the stories about them.

Whether you use social media, your camera or writing skills, you are a Content Creator. Creating content is where you can write a blog post, record a vlog or podcast that communicates a message to others. I have written countless posts for my Church, recorded many devotional blogs for adults and families and shared many pictures all communicating about Christ to others online.

Whether you like social media a lot, love to take pictures or are great at telling stories through your writing or video, the reality is a Digital Missionary is YOU! At the heart of a digital missionary is someone who has a heart for others to come to know Christ. It doesn’t matter how great you use social media or can write a blog post or record a vlog. It doesn’t matter if you are a volunteer, a parent, or a children’s minister. You can learn how to use digital tools to reach people in your context but what is most important is your desire and heart to share about Christ to others.

However, not matter how great your are at social media and content creation, if your heart isn’t to love people the way Christ would love people you are not going to be effective in reaching people for Christ. So, check your heart and check why you are doing this. Pray that God gives you his heart to love people because the online world can be very nasty. People say things online that they would never tell you in person. That is where love comes in. Remember 1 Corintains 13. Love is patient, kind, keeping no record of wrongs, it is not self-seeking or easily angered.  The more you communicate love and hope in your digital and online conversations, the more Christ will be glorified and the more people will come to know Him as their savior.

Digital Bootcamp

The great thing about being a Digital Missionary is that you can be an average Joe who simply loves Jesus or you could be a Pastor or Minister at an existing Church. You don’t have to have specific training in digital technology to become a Digital Missionary. There are tons of training out there that you can have access to.

In fact, if you are interested in improving your Online Skills to become more effective with the digital world, you can join the Digital Bootcamp Facebook Group! In this group we will discuss a different digital topic and tool each week from an expert Instructor that will help regular people become more effective online so that they can reach more people for Christ.

Digital Missionary

Conclusion

The world is only becoming more and more digital, mobile, online and tech focused. It is important, that if we want to keep reaching people for Christ, we have to become more effective in using these tools. So what will you do? Will you sit on the sidelines and say, “I don’t know how to do that?” or will you seek to learn something new and apply it so you can help more people discover God? It is my hope that you will seek to learn these tools so that Christ can continue to be proclaimed in this digital world all the more.

What do you think? Share your thoughts on what it means to be a digital missionary below or on social media using #ymsidekick as the hashtag. 

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Tom Pounder

A father of 4, Tom is the Online Campus Pastor as well as Social Media Director at New Life Christian Church in Chantilly, VA. He blogs, vlogs, periscopes and podcasts regularly about student and online ministry stuff. Check out his work at YMSidekick.com and on iTunes (search YMSidekick).

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