I’ve noticed a new nightly ritual developing in my household. Most evenings after dinner we’ll spend at least 30 minutes sharing funny videos we found throughout the day online. At first, I admit, it seemed odd. But we find so much pleasure in sharing things that make us laugh or beautiful things we discovered or learned that day, and it is a wonderful way for us all to connect.
In the same way, much has changed over the last twenty years in the way we receive, access and give information as we have become dependent on the internet. Now if we want to know something new or have a question we usually just Google it. If we need to know how to fix something in our home we look up a tutorial on YouTube. There are so many ways to get information now that were not available even ten years ago.
The church needs to learn to harness and access this highway of information in the same way. Finding what they need on the Internet is absolutely normal and expected by millennials. Even generations before them now find this is the easiest way to discover the answer to the question at hand. So why are we as churches so slow to use technology and specifically the resources found through the internet to leverage our message?
Some are reticent because they just don’t know how to do it, although it is usually as easy as simply downloading an app on your iPhone. There is also a degree of uncertainty because there are many dark parts of the web. However. we can see so many ways the Lord uses the internet to push forward his Kingdom as well as reclaim things that are lost for him.
At Church Tech Today, Matthew Fridg explores “7 Ways Video Can Save Your Pastor Time.” Fridg explains that pastors are pulled in many directions. They need the solitude and creative space to prepare their message. but the time and emotional energy to walk with parishioners through both joyful and painful circumstances. Anything that might clear their schedule a bit and create some margin in their busy lives should be considered a life-giving tool. Using videos to help ministry go further faster as well as duplicate the efforts of your pastor, can become a game changer.
In his blog Fridg, points out that communication that is done consistently the same could potentially be done via video. At membership class most churches share the same message each time that includes in greater detail the vision, mission and passion behind the church. What if the pastor created a video that allowed him to share the message one time and then have each new membership class watch it? This frees up the pastor to work on building relationships with people and answering questions instead of repeating the same message.
Other ways Fridg mentions the power of using videos for communication is seen in making a short video during the week sharing the announcements in a concise and creative way. Also having the pastor record a short welcome that can be played when someone first enters the church website. This is a great way for people to feel they are at least familiar with the pastor before visiting. If a pastor has a blog, sharing in a video format a couple of times a week can be a creative change, but also allow people to see a bit of a different side of the pastor as well.
One of the most out-of-the-box ways that Fridg suggests using video to make your pastor’s life easier is his suggestion when weather is not cooperating to have deacon’s or leadership meetings via video chat. Imagine a Tuesday night deacon’s meeting when it is dark and snowing. Instead of struggling through the cold, your pastor can sit on his coach with a warm cup of coffee and still see his deacon’s faces on the computer and dialogue through the decisions that need to be made. This definitely could be met with some negative reactions but I think many leadership that would be expected to be at the meeting would appreciate the opportunity to not leave their home one more night.
We are blessed to be living in an era where technology is changing the way we do life, both personally and in ministry. Why not use this technology to do Kingdom work but also make our lives marked more by peace and rest than stress and weariness?
Are there ways you could use video this month to create some margin for your pastor?