What will you do when everything you have worked on to achieve your goal vanishes?
We tend to set ambitious goals and strategic plans a year or more in advance. Things were “normal” until the end of 2019. In December I got married surrounded by many I loved, with no thought of social distancing. Then everything changed drastically and rapidly.
Faced with uncertainty, it can be tempting to continue to lead with the goals you set pre-COVID. Rather than waiting for things to go back to normal, however, you can take risks to pursue your dreams diligently with new innovative ideas.
I believe God has blessed us with digital strategies to continue striving for our goals despite an unpredictable 2020. The primary skill required here is not being technical, but being agile. Are you willing to pivot and run ministry as a continuous experiment to reach your audience?
We recently launched the Digital Academy 2.0 to equip you and your teams with basic digital strategy principles, tools and models. In a recent webinar, we discussed the need for innovation and digital transformation in Cru and gave a sneak peek of The Basics series as practical next steps for participants.
Take for example, Yomi Adeyinka, our digital champion in Nigeria. Yomi is going through The Basics with his 27 co-workers, including the Great Commission Movement Nigeria’s national team leader. After watching each training video individually, they come together on WhatsApp to reflect on the content. Yomi and his team are taking on new projects as they go through The Basics. His one-sentence description for The Basics is as follows: “It’s short, clear and straight to the point with a sample and worksheet.”
Why wait? Experience it for yourself like Yomi.
You can take risks to pursue your dreams diligently with new innovative ideas. - Miheret Tilahun
“...Has anything like this ever happened in your days?...” Prophet Joel asked this question to elders and everyone who listened. Joel 1:2
Just like in Joel’s time, we are asking ourselves, "What explanation can be given for what is happening around the world right now? Who thought a flu-like virus could shut down all regular activities almost everywhere in the world?" In our generation, this is one of the biggest global phenomena we are witnessing.
A few days after the Cru Digital Strategy core team meetings, we immediately started shaping our communication to help fellow staff members fully shift into digital ministry opportunities. This is the time where our global digital strategy team is stretching to serve all Cru ministries to pivot into digital space.
Together with your ministry partnership, in the last 7 days, we are seeing 197 countries reached with COVID-related articles to help spiritual needs (fear, anxiety, and suffering) in our global digital ecosystem. 92 decisions for Christ via COVID-19 pages across Everystudent.com sites
Starting tomorrow, on March 25-27, the Indigitous community will be hosting five regional webinars curated in five continents (Asia, Africa, Europe, North America, and South America) on practical digital ideas and tools that will help leaders engage in this challenging season. So far we have 1,500 people registered for all of these webinars already!
If you are interested, signup for one of the webinars to learn more about new ways of doing ministry during COVID-19 and answering these questions:
- How do we reach people online?
- How do we disciple people online?
- How do we do church online?
The relationship bridge of technology is more important than ever! You can care for the people of your congregation or network, and invite those who are far from Jesus to experience love, forgiveness, and community found in Him, using digital strategies. You can have a growing, effective ministry over distance and we want to help!
Please forward this to friends and church leaders you know by sharing the links on the left.
We just had great Indigitous hackathon events in 42 cities worldwide. This was the third time Indigitous hosted a global collaboration to create locally relevant digital tools and solutions to help fulfill the Great Commission.
My friend Russ Martin and I had the privilege to be at two African locations, Lagos and Accra, with a vibrant, smart Indigitous tribe. Collectively, these two cities worked on eight locally relevant projects.
Russ and I encouraged participants on casting vision for Indigitous communities in West Africa, teamwork, and leadership skills as well as praying together for God to move. We know that there is no digital mission without the Power of the Holy Spirit, just like Bezalel and Oholiab were anointed by God to do some creative innovation way back in the Old Testament (Exodus 36:1-2).
These were some of the projects we worked on during the weekend in those two locations.
Read full story on Indigitous.org
I just came back from a trip to South Africa. I passed through my home country Ethiopia and had one week to connect with my family and friends. The trip had two objectives. The first one was a three-day training for 40 ministry digital leaders in Africa. I spend extended time interacting with these leaders on shaping existing digital ministry opportunities in Africa.
The second objectives was our Indigitous conference in South Africa that had a similar objective as the first one but broader in its scope and not limited to only full-time missionaries. It was a humbling experience for me to look back and share how it began and where we are now with regards to digital strategies in Africa. During this event I had many conversations with leaders. I would like to share my experience with Yomi Adyinka.
Yomi Adeyinka is from Lagos, Nigeria. I have known him via Facebook for some years, but never met face-to-face. When I moved from Ethiopia to Orlando, he posted on my Facebook wall the following words…
That day was in South Africa, and I was very encouraged to meet him and see what God is doing through his life and ministry. I got to appreciate that God use our life decisions as inspiration and encouragement to others whom we don’t even know. This video below shows Yomi’s reflection in 37 seconds
I am safely home from my Kinshasa trip. Your partnership with me, enabled me to train 33 leaders from 9 French-speaking (Francophone) countries in Africa. The trainees were friendly with contagious smile. Our missionaries, students and some professionals were excited to engage in digital mission to make a difference. In Africa there is a rapid growing mobile market and even faster growth in the number of social media users.
God is at work and people are hearing the gospel. For example, Riche Mbengi Mayele is a Law student in Kinshasa. He used to face challenges to start spiritual conversations with students on campus. Now, because of the tablet strategy he learned, students are open to explore more about Jesus. He passionately shared how the tablet with the Jesus Film and God Tools apps are helping him to connect well with students.
Riche led Emmanuel to the Lord after using a Jesus film clip and the Four Spiritual Laws (evangelistic) presentation. Riche used his tablet to do follow up with Emmanuel, by showing him the “Walking with Jesus” discipleship series. Now Emmanuel is joining Riche to reach other students for Jesus.
Another example is Bayang Mo-gnanguele, a staff member in Chad. He is very passionate about using Facebook to share the gospel.
His Facebook page attracted Rita, who works in the Customs office. Rita was following posts and Bible verses posted by Bayang. One day Rita sent a message on Facebook, requesting help and Bayang responded. They discovered they were in the same city so Rita invited Bayang to his home. Once there and sharing with them, Rita and all his family members gave their lives to Jesus. Bayang continued with regular chats with Rita and challenged him to talk about God with others. Rita is very outgoing and started talking about his new found Savior to his Muslim friend. Soon his Muslim friend becomes a believer and he is now in the follow up. The story doesn’t end here. Even as a new Christian, this Muslim man is preaching the gospel to others we can not reach. Watch the interview I did with Bayang
I wrote this blog post on Indigitous.org
I have known Robel for a long time, and I am impressed with how the Lord is leading him and making him grow. He was one of the Indigitous Addis live-learning speakers. His talk was about a Church SMS (text) system. At the time, he was just developing the system but now he has finished and deployed it to his church in Hawassa, Ethiopia. He started receiving many requests from churches to use his Church SMS system. I interviewed him via email, and this is his story.
How and when did you start the ChurchSMS idea?
It was a sunny day, and our software team held its daily standup meeting in the morning. After the meeting we started working on our issues for the day… adding new features, fixing bugs and all sorts of things. One of the issues of our sprint (short-term goals) was adding the SMS notification module to a big governmental application we were assigned to develop. Our scrum master (product development coach) asked for a volunteer to take care of the whole SMS integration.
I immediately took the chance and did it successfully within a few days. As a developer you enjoy looking at your code in action; I was fascinated by the performance and simplicity of the module I had written. I soon realized that it could become a good product. Read more here
Miheret T. Eshete