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Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

Social networking is still the fastest-growing active social media behaviour online, increasing from 36% of global Internet users to 59% managing their profile on a monthly basis by the end of 2011…Facebook has 845 million active users –  http://thesocialskinny.com/100-more-social-media-statistics-for-2012/

Recently, the world’s largest social network made news when it released an initial public offering to become a publicly traded stock.  That’s not the big news.  The big news has more to do with the potential that lies within social networking as well as social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.  That’s the big news for those who proclaim the Good News.

Use Facebook for your ministry.  Set up a profile.  Find friends online.  Share the profile link via email with your ministry members or congregants.  Add the link to your Facebook to your email signature or link the Facebook button to your website or blog.

Here are some simple strategies for Facebook usage for ministry:

  • Post upcoming events and invite ‘friends of friends’
  • Share inspirational verses and passages through status updates
  • Upload photos from events like mission trips or church outreach activities
  • Start Facebook groups for prayer, Bible study or salvation Q&A
  • Set up a fan page for members to get updated information on church or ministry activities

Facebook has a lot of potential.  Use it to your advantage to advance the gospel.  Spread the Good News throughout cyberspace by using Facebook as a steward of the Good News.

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Get the latest update from Life Path Ministries at the link below.

http://myemail.constantcontact.com/Special-Message-from-Life-Path-Ministries—Services.html?soid=1101724008761&aid=oea1rjiVhBY.

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I am an avid “web-crawler.” I search the web for sites that can help me with my work and ministry. I have discovered some sites that truly can support you as you seek to enhance and expand your ministry for greater effectiveness in this day and age.

Here is a short list of sites for support:

  • http://www.outreach.com/ Great resources from banners to do-it-yourself templates; be sure to take a look at http://blog.outreach.com/ for tips and ideas on a wide range of outreach topics and http://www.outreachmagazine.com/ for articles and information on outreach. Look into their church-planting resources, too.
  • http://www.lifetreecafe.com/ If you are in ministry or seeking to get one started, here is a possible resource that will cause you to be “missional.” Check out what this conversational and casual gathering can do for your church and the un-churched. Read what it’s about. It will take some planning and strategies on your part.
  • http://www.lifechurch.tv/ This church is taking multi-site ministry into a whole new era. You have to check out their online worship experience as well as their resources and messages (even those that are not live.) Open is a great resource for downloads of templates and forms that will help administration and ministry leaders. YouVersion has to be one of my favorite sites on the web. With everything from “live” worship and the audio Bible to Bible reading plans and the means for sharing via Facebook and Twitter, this site will rock your world. Church Metrics is a cool free tool that allows you to track everything from attendance to commitments and baptisms. It’s web-based and even has a mobile application for on-the-go ministry and small group leaders.
  • http://www.urbanministry.org/ Tons and tons of information and resources for “street ministry” and beyond. I use the Word Press blog application for Saved2Serve, our network for ministries, faith-based organizations and parachurches. You have to check out their Church Grants and Volunteer sub-sites. This site is a real winner.
  • http://www.ebase.org/ I like E-Base for nonprofits and donor tracking because it does something different from Church Metrics. This download allows you to track donors, volunteers, and other things such as outreach campaigns. It allows you to see what works and what doesn’t in a data storage format almost like CRM software for business.

These sites are useful and worth exploring. I see them as mechanisms for strengthening and supporting your work in ministry. Be sure to visit our web database for the free download of “When the Laborers are Few.” This will help those who have few “workers” for the harvest that is before them in their part of the vineyard.

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Depend on the Lord in whatever you do,
and your plans will succeed.
(Proverbs 16:3, NCV)

Lord, I pray for Your help with totally depending on You.
My way is not working.
Let my works glorify You as well as my words.
Be Lord over all that I have
And get as much glory as You can stand to gain from me
And what I have to offer.
Bless You, Lord. Bless You.

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Check out Blue Fish’s Never Too Early video on Tangle.  The message touches our youth and children as well as young adults.  It is never too late.  Yes, Moses was at least 80 before he led the children out of Egypt and Abraham and Sarai were advanced in years before they had a child, but God is not a respecter of persons. God can use whoever whenever and however He chooses to do so.  He will use whoever He calls.  Let us use such videos and other items to share with our children and youth on answering God’s call for service.

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You search the Scriptures, because you think you will find eternal life in them. The Scriptures tell about me. –John 5:39 (CEV)

Where do you “search” for the Scriptures? There are some places where I believe you can search the Bible and get deep into your study without going deep into your pockets for software.

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Here’s the lesson: Use your worldly resources to benefit others and make friends. Then, when your earthly possessions are gone, they will welcome you to an eternal homeLuke 16:9 (NLT)

The issue is about how we use our “worldly resources.” Does what we do “benefit others and make friends?” Are we doing any good with our earthly treasures? Look at what we do with what we have and see what it is accomplishing.

If you are on the other side of the equation, we need to see where our resources originate.  Some companies seek to do good simply because their products or services are questionable such as alcohol, tobacco and some gambling institutions.  For many Christian ministries and nonprofits, it may be tempting to receive much-needed dollars to make good works work.  yet, what message would be sent by trying to present the King of Kings brought to you by the king of beers?  just think on it. Here are some simple strategies for getting support for your ministry and/ or charity during hard times like these;

  • Try companies that need to improve their public image.  Check out the news on Toyota and other companies that need good press.  Speak with local dealers who are feeling the impact of the negative press.
  • Look local.  Check out your local better business bureau and your chambers of commerce on the local level as well as local business associations and Christian business networks. 
  • Does your church have a business directory of congregates who own small businesses and purchase advertising? Check out the shepherd’s guide, “the Christians’ Choice of Yellow Pages.” See if there is something like this in your community.
  • Start with something small like gift cards, paper products or items from a wish list.  Find out who would be willing to supply or doante specific items from your wish list by distributing among local businessmen and through your email contacts.  Also, post your wish list at your local Starbucks coffee shop (after checking with staff, of course) or in the break room at your job, ensuring that you have stated your cause and your need in a brief message prior to the list of items needed.
  • Prepare an announcement for Sunday services and ask local congregations to partner with you for food drives, community events, rummage sales, and other things, especially volunteers and senior citizens.  You have to connect  it to faith and service, especially if you can relate it to the Scriptures.
  • Check out “church grants” like Urban Ministry and Church Biz as well as other church grant resources.   Also, try foundations such as Christian foundations and  other sources like Your Church.
  • Look at free and donated items as giveaways and prizes
  • Do good… others will take notice, and then they will support it by volunteering, offering money, asking what you need or simply staying out of your way.

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People are not to merely coexist. We are to do more than share air and space together. We are to connect with others as a community. I find that, with the advances of the Internet, social media, and other mobile communications, we have no excuse for not connecting beyond what we have done in the past. We should be even more connected to others than in previous times.

Look at what I said about community on my other blog. Visit https://revbruce.wordpress.com/category/community/ and discover insights and ideas about community in a modern perspective.

Check out www.give.org and www.pointsoflight.org for ways to contribute and connect within your local community. If you want to make a difference in your community, check out http://www.usaweekend.com/section/MDDAY and www.servenet.org today.

Keep up with the latest tweets from Life Path @ www.twitter.com/lifepath01/

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Are you in business for yourself? Do you find yourself contemplating whether you need to open a for-profit or nonprofit? Are you preparing to turn a hobby into a part-time small business? I think you need to www.score.org or www.sba.gov, even www.irs.gov for information on setting up a start-up business.

Entrepreneurs should check out www.linkedin.com and www.ryze.com as another social media network option. Currently,my page is http://www.ryze.com/go/RevBruce. Get a glimpse of it from time to time.

Business tip for Christians: Set a percentage amount that you want to dedicate to giving to the local church as a “business tithe” or “business offering.”

I got something to say. Yep! I’ve got something to say about Christian ministry, theology, church, spreading the gospel, and reading the Bible, even living out the truth. I’ve got something to say at https://revbruce.wordpress.com where i let it all out.

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He who has ears to hear, let him hear.

Matthew 11:15 (NKJV)

No matter what vehicle we choose to use to spread God’s Word to the far reaches of the earth, we must be sure to choose something that will reach a market of people with “ears to hear.” If you choose MySpace over Twitter and Facebook, then let it be because there are those out there with ears to hears the Word. When you blog, you could use Blogger or WordPress. You just need to make sure your blog is reaching and touching some people for the Lord and to His glory. Whether you write Bible studies or spread via spoken word, be sure that you offer something that can be comprehended with conviction and compassion. No matter what you do, you need to do your best to honor God through what you do. Let God make the most of your YouTube or Gmail accounts. Ensure that God gets the glory from every one of your sermons on podcast, each Bible teacher training on webcast, and all of your other venues. Let God get the glory from all that you do.

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Finding the right resources in a day like today makes a big difference. You can lose a lot of time trying to sort out which sites are worthwhile and which ones are totally worthless. I spend countless hours on the Web tryingout different things and seeking a variety of resources for everything from Bible study and small groups to evangelism and church growth strategies. Let me say it like this first of all and be done with it. I love John C. Maxwell and Max Lucado, two definitie marketing and mega-messengers. In addition, I find Dave Ramsey to have a simple and straightforward approach to dealing with dollars and sense. The websites listed here are primarily those that i find helpful with Bible study, outreach, evangelism and small group information.
One of my favorite sites to visit and just get ideas is www.lifeway.com. Also, www.family.org has numerous resources that I get a kick out of when I am on the web. I don’t tend to visit www.christianbook.com or www.pocketpower.org that often, but I believe that each has a great wealth of resources that help me in my Bible study and outreach time. Other than Relevant Magazine, I am probably the biggest fan of www.outreachmagazine.com and not just because they’re located in Vista (San Diego County). I like www.christianitytoday.com and www.bibletools.org as well as www.ministrymaker.com. If I had to choose a social network for ministry, I would have to settle on two: www.facebook.com and www.twitter.com.

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Neo. Yeah, man. I said Neo, not Nemo. Neo serves as an iconic pop culture figure that has the power to influence the shootings by the young men of Columbine fame. Yet. somewhere nestled deep within the storyline, you hear and see hints of Neo with some Messianic qualities that many expected to see out of the Lord upon His coming. In fact, many of the film’s fans having a parallel understanding of the film’s storyline and the Messiah’s role for saving His people from the enemy. What gets me is that some of our church-going, God-serving people are not aware that The Matrix has such a following. Nor, if we truly pay homage to art imitating life and life pulling a vice versa, do we expect that many youth pastors will start sporting long black trench coats and dark Ray-Ban shades. However, I am convinced that some who sit on the edge eagerly await a fighting, kicking and swinging type of Messianic figure like Neo to truly “free” believers from the enemy. Like many others, they should probably read Revelations and at least John 1:1-14, Isaiah 53 and Psalm 22.

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