Social Media and the Three C’s

At the CGCS, Greg Mathias and Sam Morris continue their series on the Great Commission and social media; this time on the “three c’s” of mission minded use. Here’s an excerpt:

This series on “The Great Commission and the Digimodern Age” started for Sam and I over a cup of coffee and good old fashioned face-to-face conversation. Our purpose was to bring awareness to this areas of communication, contextualization, and culture, which are all exhibited in social media. While our particular focus is churches, pastors, and missionaries who are seeking to wisely enter into this digimodern age of communication, we believe this series is beneficial to all Christians. In this series, we highlight questions of purpose and audience, we caution against wrong motives of the heart, and make the case that everyone needs to consider a social media presence, while understanding there will be some that wisely will choose to limit that presence or avoid it entirely.

Read the full post here.

The Missionary and Social Media

At the CGCS blog, Greg Mathias continues his series on social media and the Great Commission. Here’s an excerpt from his most recent post on the missionary’s use of social media:

There is a level of wisdom a missionary in a restricted access country needs to assume, but there is also a level of arrogance, fear, and naiveté that this type of language exposes. First, abbreviations and using clever symbols in your words are not difficult to figure out. Second, security can be a well-crafted covering for fear. Additionally, I wonder if this “James Bond for Jesus” mentality is a twisted self-importance. Does the missionary think too highly of himself and too little of God? We need to be careful and not be so “secure” that nobody back home or among your people know that you are a Christian.

Read the full post here.

The Great Commission, You, and “Them”

One of the great joys I have in my role here at the seminary is to work with the leadership of the Center for Great Commission Studies. This center helps to guide our campus in both our awareness and understanding of and our participation in global missions. As a church leader you should check out their website and blog.

This week they are sponsoring our Global Missions Week which features various events and training opportunities for our students, faculty and guests. These days truly represent the ethos and mission of Southeastern! It is fun to meet missionaries from around the world and watch them interact with our campus.

One event is a pastor’s luncheon jointly sponsored by the CGCS and our Center for Pastoral Leadership and Preaching, featuring a discussion panel with Drs. Johnny Hunt and Daniel Akin as well as presentations by the CGCS team. The theme is “The Great Commission and the Local Church.” Be sure to check out the video that will be on the center’s website. Since I am facilitating part of it, I have been thinking a lot about this topic.

We as Baptists often talk about a primary way to fulfill the mission of God and to bring Him glory is through the fulfillment of the Great Commission. Our denomination is intended to be one large Great Commission affinity network by design and purpose. It is really why the Southern Baptist Convention was created and why we should continue to exist. If each church, therefore, would engage in true Great Commission fulfillment then logically our convention should be so engaged as well. So, what are we doing? How are we doing? Why or why not are we doing?

Sometimes it seems to me that we create this nebulous “them” that somehow gets us off the hook or lessens the blow of our failed responsibilities. The denomination becomes someone other than us somehow. It is always easier to blame “them.” Sounds to me like an old story in a garden about a piece of fruit.

For the Southern Baptist Convention to be engaged fully in Great Commission fulfillment, each church must be engaged as stated above. For each church to be engaged, we need engaged leaders and members. This whole process must begin with each believer. Then it’s harder to make that a “them.” I believe that is an “us.”

So think about these questions before you try to find another “them” to blame: What does it mean to personally be engaged in Great Commission fulfillment as a church leader or member and how do I lead others to join me? How can we best lead churches who have not had a strong commitment to this type of Great Commission fulfillment to develop the necessary awareness and to actually pursue it?

And while we are at it let’s make certain we are leading our churches to fulfill the “whole” Great Commission. Christ’s mandate was not simply a call to evangelism. He also wanted us to teach them what He taught us and to lead them to identify with Him. As YOU are going, disciple. Hard to push that off on “them” isn’t it?