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We are community visionaries. We live in an amazing time where so much information is at our fingertips! Most people don’t know what is out there, but you will find it all here. We endeavor to be a one-stop shop for all the equipping necessary to grow and build the Community through discipleship relationships using technology. It’s important to know that this story is not about me, it’s about all of us, and how God is using us to unite our community and share the gospel of His Kingdom.
This page attempts to answer 5 Questions:
What are we doing? Why are we doing it? How are we doing it? When are we successful? Where is God taking us?
What Are We Doing? We are spreading a movement by sharing the vision and creating Community websites the unite the Body with the gospel of the Kingdom. “Where there is no vision (“the ability to perceive future developments”), the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18). The literal Hebrew translation is, “Without a prophetic vision, the people perish.” The vision which is laid open in this document has no name and it is not just about HomeGroups.Org Ministries, It is about God and what we believe He has birthed into our hearts. HomeGroups.Org is merely the title to the ministry God might use to bring this vision and gospel into reality through home groups. This vision is for every Church, Ministry and group of believers in the United States of America and the World. What is in these few pages is impossible but “with God we know that all things are possible”. The heart of this Vision is to “Awaken the multitudes to Jesus Christ and empower them for revolutionary spiritual growth in unity of Spirit and Truth”. By spreading a movement in the Body to unite believers in love under the headship of our Lord Jesus Christ, we believe we could impact America and the World towards the greatest Awakening ever seen in modern day history, and we realize that “The Time Is Now”. We know that every visitor to this site is going to hear things and see things in their Bible that they never knew was there!
We believe that this is possible by first dedicating all that we are to God and loving people. We will achieve such a vision by pointing to Jesus Christ who we know will lead and unite us through His love and Spirit. HomeGroups.Org is about igniting the hearts of people and uniting them as Jesus modeled it to us through acts of love, service, teaching, preaching, and healing. We believe that through a true Spirit-filled life we could ignite the hearts of the body to be the Body the Lord intended us to be. We do not believe that we can do this in our own power and strength and know that such a task can only be done by God Himself through His people who are willing to be vessels.
We are dedicated to increasing the fellowship through online social media and utilizing small groups in homes or wherever people are willing to meet, so that the benefits roll up into the Church. HomeGroups.Org is simply looking to walk alongside the churches and provide resources to keep us connected and better equip the Body of Christ towards Jesus in Unity and Love. We believe the end result will be passionate hearts that will impact the world around them and our hope is for the largest harvest of souls for God in this century. By doing this, we begin to turn one person into ten and ten into a hundred and hundred into a thousand and thousand into one hundred thousand and hundred thousand into millions. All this by simply being who God called us to be; Spirit-filled believers who are living out the great commission to unite both houses by:
Impacting. Discipling. Uniting. Igniting. Plugging in. Equipping . Sending out
Why Are We Doing It? We are spreading a vision because we feel it has been laid on our hearts by the Holy Spirit to unify the Body and rEVOLutionize Christianity in America and the world.
How Are We Doing It? We are spreading a vision by focusing primarily on Community, Home Groups and using technology to unite millions of groups to empower and equip their Leaders and followers.
When Are We Successful? We are successful in spreading the vision and gospel of the Kingdom when we see the country start to move in a positive direction because of the positive changes we have affected in the newly-unified Body of Christ. Ultimately, we are successful when this gospel of the Kingdom has been preached to all the world.
Mt 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
The following is a good list of measurement about what we expect to see when we are successful:
Leaders (which will grow in time) and their roles have loosely been defined as:
- God the Father, by the Power of His Spirit and in the Name of Yeshua; Jesus the Christ. This is His Vision and the Vision shared by Leadership comes from Him.
- Visionary Leaders who also see the vision of community Health and Wellness.
The following areas of agreement are concerning what the Leadership of this ministry believes. It is NOT to be thought of as judgment against what anyone else believes who wishes to participate in this ministry. We are an INTER- denominational ministry dedicated to uniting the Body of Christ and adhering to the Truth of the whole Bible. Therefore we do not have an official statement of faith other than what has been written in the whole Bible. We are simply sharing our UNIFYING beliefs as Leaders of the ministry and leaders in the communities.
- Accountability- All Leadership agrees that we are accountable to our Creator as well as each other in building and maintaining this mission in COMPLETE accordance with the whole Bible. Communication, decision making and discipline for non- Biblical conduct will be based on Scripture. Conflict resolution must be swift and according to Scripture. Together, Leadership may define a separate document concerning and outlining discipline in Love.
- Serving- All Leadership agrees that the key to maintaining this Integrity on a daily basis is Word, Prayer, Fasting, and Holy Spirit Guidance as we move in His Will every day. We dedicate ourselves to a Spiritual life, not a fleshly life. This is a life of servitude and obedience, and servant-leadership as laid out on the website. This idea of ‘Body Life’ can be summed by calling it the ‘GodFirst’ principle. These things are required to be ‘filled’ with the Holy Spirit; not as a glass is filled with water, but the way that the Wind FILLS the Sails of the ‘sailboat’ that we are building.
- Finances- All Leadership agrees that we will build a method for handling all assets including finances in a completely transparent way that is available to the entire world. Concerning all giving/ offering, the Visionaries and Leaders agree that we are led to allow the givers to decide where in the Ministry they would like to see their gift(s) be used by itemizing areas of the ministry. Leadership will agree to sow seeds into the ministry as well.
- Politics- All Leadership agrees that just like Volition, Marriage, Family and community, Government is a Divine Institution; the sanctity of which should be protected by us all. Isaiah 33:22 says “For the LORD is our judge (Judicial Branch), the LORD is our lawgiver (Legislative Branch), the LORD is our king (Executive Branch); he will save us. George Washington said “It is impossible to govern the world without God and the Bible“. All Leadership believes that these separations of powers that make up our government from our Founding Fathers came DIRECTLY from the whole Bible. We believe that similar to the divisions in the Body we intend to unite, there are divisions in politics that we intend to unite, and even transcend the false left-right paradigm that sets both Christians and Americans in general against each other. The separation between church and state is for keeping the moneychangers out of the temple. In agreement with the limitations set forth by 501(c)(3) tax exempt status, we believe the ONLY thing that matters in politics is the voting record of individuals and how they line up with the whole Bible. That is the only thing we need to concern ourselves with in getting involved in politics. We ABSOLUTELY NEED to vote early and often. But we should turn off the television debates, ignore the campaign rhetoric and slander and stick to voting records. We also need to hold their Feet to the fire while in office so they represent our convictions in EVERY decision, we should not just vote once a year (FeetOnFire.org?) Voting is not the solution, voting is just the way to get bad people out of office, which is a divine institution.
- Health and Wellness- All Leadership agrees that health and wellness are both Spiritual and physical. BOTH start with fasting. Fasting is the detoxification of our bodies as well as our souls. Physically, fasting tells our body to begin the process of cleansing toxins, and it is great practice to cleanse one’s soul at the same time as cleansing the body. This should be done matter-of-factly rather than religiously as the whole Bible clearly states. Food is the mechanism that our Creator intended for us give the body what it needs. Spiritually, nourishment is referred to in the Bible as Bread, Milk, Meat, living Water etc., so the correlation is clear concerning Spiritual and physical wellness.
- Education- Whether in public, private or home schools, education starts with the parents and home groups. All Leadership agrees that it is our intent to unite all avenues of educating ourselves and our children. The division between homeschool and public/ private school families is not Biblical, no matter what method is used for educating the Body of believers. We agree that you can find SOME truth everywhere. But also that ALL Truth must be measured against the REED by which all Truth is measured, the whole Bible (and specifically Torah).
- Music in Worship- All Leadership agrees that there is no such thing as ‘Christian’ music, there is only non-christian messages in some music. We refrain from allowing those messages to enter our ears. Some members of the Body like to Worship with music and some do not. We agree that no matter what people use or include with their Worship we need only make sure it is done in Spirit (without unforgiven sin; while filled with the Spirit) and in Truth (According to the Word) John 4:21–24.
- Fellowship- All Leadership agrees that we have a Biblical mandate not to forsake the gathering together of ourselves. Being Kingdom-minded tells us that the foundation of the Body is discipleship and home groups, and we should meet on a regular basis TOGETHER in our homes and being intimate. But we are also mandated to come together in the community as well and celebrate our salvation while preparing ways to impact our community for His sake. This is also a place for people who do not already have a home group to find one near them, with like-minded people who will enjoy each other’s’ company and grow together in Love and Unity and keep each other accountable to Spiritual growth.Being church-minded will cause believers to think that home groups are off-shoots of a particular denominationally-affiliated church ‘home’. This mindset causes people to go to church buildings in NEED of something rather than joining together already equipped and filled, ready to go out and DO something; we imagine a ministry that turns the churches in America into places FILLED with Kingdom warriors whose hearts are on fire with Spirit and Truth, and feet that are on fire to spread the Gospel and serve the lost.
- Discipline- Discipline is just choosing between what you want NOW and what you want MOST. Like almost everything else in this journey, all Leadership agrees that discipline is a volitional issue. When we fail in disciplining ourselves, it is our job to want others to help discipline us, whether for accountability or penalty for bad choices. We do not judge others EVER. But we do use our spiritual discernment to help us understand things to the best of our abilities.
- Discipleship- The word disciple is translated from the word maqhthV in the Greek, meaning a learner, i.e. pupil. Discipleship is all about equipping people learn on their journey. All leadership agrees that “when the pupil is ready the Master appears”. Mt 10:24 says, “the disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord”. We believe that the Head of the Body is the Christ and we are to learn under a Pastor-teacher (poimenaV kai didaskalouV) but discipleship is a life-long endeavor to always continue learning about our Creator and Sustainer. This is the heart of our ministry- Mt 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
- Conflict- When God’s Truth collides with the world’s wisdom we get conflict. Conflict resolution then is realignment with God’s Truth. And we cannot do this through our flesh. For this we need Spiritual Leadership. The problem in America is that everyone sees conflict related to sin or position/ authority issues when actually it is simply an obstacle that can be an amazing chance for growth. It is an essential part of God’s plan. Also, Spiritual Leadership not only resolves conflict but may actually cause it. We must look at these opportunities for growth with thanksgiving and work in love and unity to find resolutions. We must deal with conflict using humility, honesty, courage and grace.
These key areas are not all-inclusive, but we believe they are foundational. When we begin to see these things happening in home groups, they will begin to happen in all of the churches that are currently having problems that are not quickly being resolved. In addition to seeing these changes as good measures of successful impact, we also intend to measure our success by the implementation of other tools.
Technology- Taking our Community lives back via Social Media and cutting edge technology: Turning Millions of Followers into Leaders and Millions of Leaders into Warriors
A message to those who would use technology against us :
“Information aggregation and power centralization: Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Dating Sites, Craigslist, Mainstream Media, Religious Institutions, etc; It’s a paradigm shift to return to the old way of doing things in a new world. We love what these technology companies give us, and we don’t necessarily want to get rid of them, but we don’t believe they deserve a centralized monopoly because they have all the money. Real change comes from the bottom up, not the top down. We don’t want people telling us what to buy or what to watch, we want people to produce things we want and need. And if we don’t like something, we want to be able to tell other people. We don’t want to be brainwashed into who we should vote for based on who has the most money, we just want to see the voting records of our leaders so we can decide for ourselves who has our interests at heart instead of their own agenda.
We are not just “consumers” or “demographics”. Without each of us, the “World” doesn’t work. We are supposed to be in the world, how else can we affect it, subdue it, tend to it? The world isn’t just villages anymore. We don’t just have a bunch of small businesses anymore, we have business that want to master the planet. The enemy of small-business, is big business because they are competitors and according to Henry Kissinger “competition is a sin”. We should be huge advocates for Globalization. After all, that is what we are called to do- connect the world to the Truth, to go out into all the world and teach. But that doesn’t mean we can’t be community advocates, and nationalists at the same time.
Leadership and Technology- The internet caused the largest and fastest social change in our history. While most of us have been impacted in the way we live our lives by this technology, we are only reaching part of the distance to the radical new tools this technology will create. The internet has become something that allows all mankind to communicate with each other regardless of location. This powerful communication tool is becoming the primary way we receive information. This information, unlike that from most MS media, is not controlled or altered by large moneyed institutional interests. As a result, there is an increasing level of social transparency and information dissemination unprecedented in the history of the world. While this power to share information is increasingly obvious, this new world differs from the old world in two fundamental ways. This communication media is bi-directional, allowing communication between anyone on the internet and anyone else. The second difference is built on the first, the internet is inherently about communities of people with common interests. The internet can facilitate for the first time in history relationships with minute by minute dialogue without the need for physical interaction. This is both good and bad so we must use it wisely and sparingly. It is to be used to enhance relationships, communication and lifestyle, not replace it.
Leadership and Technology- Connecting people and resources, connecting leaders and followers
There are numerous ways to reach out to Followers.. And most Leaders will initiate this because they are natural-born Leaders (no pun intended). However, there is an even more powerful way to engage Followers. It is to organize global groups that actual meet face to face on a regular basis. This is a Follower club with multiple chapters who meet at different locations AT THE SAME TIME AND WITH THE SAME AGENDA!! We estimate in the United States we have about 3,000 to 4,000 of these key people who could become passionate advocates for God’s Truth and Mission at the highest levels of leadership. If we were to hold monthly meetings where about 50 people attended each meeting we could delegate the organization of these meetings to the Leaders who we are confident are led by the Spirit and/ or at least can be trusted to be a strong leader for humanity/ community. If each of these Leaders organized one meeting per month, we could reach every single zip code every month. The combination of their time and resources could insure the key influencers are passionately on our side. More important, we could reach every zip code all day every DAY with just a few simple ideas and some commitment.
Commitment is about spending time regularly with our Followers and our community. It is about fellowship and dedication to a vision and a lifestyle. We need to embrace our Followers, who mostly stand alone today, and bring them actively into our Faith community. To do this we need to develop a social infrastructure which harnesses the ability to communicate easily and personally called the Social Media (web 3.0). This is far beyond the mainstream mentality we have today, and beyond resources utilized by our enemies of the Church and the Republic. We need to interact with and engage our Followers and potential Followers. We must solicit and support their contribution of time and content and encourage further interactivity. The goal is to create millions of Followers globally and engage them in a personal fashion frequently. The social networks is in fact a network of people with many contacts. These interconnections allow information to propagate like WAVES with only a modest number of connections, and within a few iterations reach a very large number of people. The following site’s arithmetic shows that it will only take six people in a row to be able to connect personally with anyone in the world:
“Six Degrees of Separation”—roughly, the notion that anyone can form a chain of personal contacts leading to any other person, with no more than six links in the chain. —Joe Kissell This is the power of social media.
Interaction of communities with links can propagate a single conversation to a very large group, with only a small number of conversations in every hop. The communication trail is personal, rich and inclusive yet it can reach the entire world in just minutes! This powerful new technology, properly used can take help build a much larger Follower base and shower this much larger pool of Followers with dialogue, recognition and constant achievement, not the least of which is LIBERTY AND FREEDOM in CHRIST from government tyranny. This is the high-level view:
Here is a Picture of the U.S divided into state territories in Mappoint09:
Keep in mind, that each one of these represents only ONE SINGLE PERSON, but already from a strategic perspective you get the feeling of success just by looking at this picture.. There are 3,141 counties and county equivalents in the 50 States and the District of Columbia. That’s really not a whole lot of workload to unite and empower only 3 thousand people. So if we had just those people, and those people reach out to just 500 people, the equation would look like this: 500 X 3141=1,570,500 people. Considering all of those 2 million people were excited about Positive change in their community at the exact same time, we could change the direction of the country and our churches overnight. With downloadable mobile apps and audits like the ones on this website, The remnant of believers woiuld be a true force to be reckoned with and would require immediate recognition. Does anyone else believe in the power of intention? If not, then you don’t believe in prayer. I would hope that ‘pray’ and ‘call your senator’ would be a regular occurrence on that calendar shared by 2 million people who could be notified at the same time to call. And they could receive a text message and email reminder, instead of hearing it on talk radio but forgetting before the next advertisement is over. We will be one body of patriots as well as truly one Body in Christ (which is what Christ intended for the church.) This would be local, grassroots communication that streams communication up and out from the ground level that is unified. Now let us also imagine, what if these people were Holy Spirit-filled, completely non-denominational and completely non-partisan patriots who are also part of a concerted effort to remove that which divides us. In other words, actively seeking out anyone to show them that we love them and that we are on the same team and SOME of our differences are ok.
Regionalization, not Globalism–
This will allow us to re-define the ministries and correctly define the Body of Christ as did the Christ and His Apostles (“i.e. the church at Rome”, et al.). We need to be building strong relationships both with, and within, community churches allowing us maximized potential to shape the churches, show them Truth and empower the them to restore America and the Bride.
In terms of rocking the boat, the scripture tells us that the wisdom that is from above is first PURE, then PEACABLE, GENTLE, and EASY to be ENTREATED, FULL of MERCY and GOOD FRUITS, without PARTIALITY and without HYPOCRISY (James 3:17). This is the kind of ‘Wisdom’ we want to disseminate. Believers exuding this type of demeanor are NEVER troublemakers. They know that heavenly wisdom is better ‘caught’ than ‘taught’. That is, they know that the power of influence is every bit as effective as instruction. It’s enough for them to follow God’s direction into a church and patiently over time allow a spirit of godliness to permeate the body. We all know that buildings do NOT constitute a church. Churches, when they become big enough, build buildings for the purposes of education and expansion. If built for the proper reasons, and under God’s direction (yes, God can direct churches to build buildings for HIS glory), buildings can be an asset to the kingdom to spread its gospel. We should be careful about making blanket statements about denominations because all of us have been where others have been.
A denomination is nothing more than a fellowship of churches that agree in doctrine and practice (and all of them contain error, but so can we). It is a voluntary association that allows smaller groups to be part of a bigger whole, thereby pooling their resources to carry out the Great Commission. Can they become political? Yes, Can the tail wag the dog? In some cases, yes. Can a denominational offshoot be the work of Satan? Yes! But let us never throw the baby out with the bathwater.
HomeGroups.Org (Hearts on fire) is one avenue of many for equipping the saints and unifying them. Truth on Fire is the publication/ dissemination avenue. Feet on Fire is the avenue dedicated to holding politicians accountable by only focusing on their voting records and following votes every day and comparing them with SCRIPTURE, not the false conservative- liberal paradigm that doesn’t mean the same thing it did 50 years ago just like much of our vocabularies and dictionary terms.
Reaching into the physical churches is only one aspect of the ministry. Outreach into the community is another. The vision of this ministry is also to create a map and database of its volunteers for kingdom work so that if there is anyone in the Body with needs, we can quickly locate the nearest person that can help instead of just waiting for people to show up in our “churches” and support our pastors and mortgages. Below is a screenshot of 100 members of my local church put into a mapping program. Each pin represents a volunteer. If I was aware of a need, I could immediately send a text, email and phone call to the person closest that could help depending on the area of expertise needed. The efficiency of helps and evangelism that this would create is immeasurable.
Jail Ministry-All Leadership agrees that the domestic prison population reinforces the notorious reputation the US has earned for injustice and inequality. Almost every prison is at 100% capacity or more. And WELL over 50% of those incarcerated are charged with drug crimes, not violent crimes. The punitive rather than rehabilitative approach has led to very high levels of repeat offenders, particularly for those committing non-violent offenses such as drug possession, shoplifting, and child support non-payment. And upon release, former convicts are confronted with a permanent disenfranchisement in terms of voting rights and employment opportunities. (HeartsOnFire-Ministries) Homegroups.org has developed a Bible study and program that addresses these issues and empowers home groups and churches the material at no cost. This project, we call Project Uplift, is designed to lift up people in the community who are down on their luck and change their lives forever, not just bring them to salvation,, by showing them the path.
Other Outreach Services
HomeGroups.Org Praise band(s) events like other groups are doing are an additional outreach tool. We have quarterly events involving powerful worship, deep prayer and calls to action! Monthly Broadcasts and our weekly Online Groups assist in frequent Fellowship outside the groups (and daily fellowship both up and out). We put together Public Access television and Webinars on topics and broadcast other Pastor-Teachers’ videos. Community service organization and First Responders groups, Online Radio broadcasts with interviews/ guests who discuss the whole Bible are also available. Self-Sustainable Living and organic healthy lifestyles (depending on God, not government). We are also working on HeartsOnFire Magazine. Voter Education (non-partisan within 501(c)3 Limits) assistance and Constitution classes about unity in protecting the sanctity of Government and our constitution teach believers to rise above party affiliation and vote on biblical principles, not political rhetoric. Joining hands in unity with other Christian organizations like YMCA, Salvation Army and with Homeschool groups to use TOF/ HOF resources is a way we also “forsake not the gathering together”. Online bookstores are a way for the ours and affiliate websites to generate income for the ministry, as well as for kingdom-minded churches to profit from the ministry by reselling online bookstores to generate income for them on their websites. Audiobooks are an awesome way to get information on the go whether in the car or on your smartphone; Our ministry creates and sells Audiobooks but also provides our ministry partners tools to do that themselves. Food Pantry management is built into our website to allow churches to inventory their donations and to make sure there is no waste or theft across the entire Body so that we can get back to charity and take our responsibility back from the government that stole our blessings from us.
Where is God taking us? He is guiding us into a more Messiah-like future defined in the entire Bible. He is preparing us for life after “death” and our brief time reigning with Him when He returns. He is reminding us that He gave us the ability to create our own futures and if our hearts aren’t on fire the future isn’t pretty. The Bible is quite clear regarding the tares that grow up with the wheat.
HCM (Human Capital Management)- Human capital is what we all are in the Kingdom. Managing Human Capital is exactly what God does (only on His level compared to ours). We are “assets” in God’s Kingdom, ambassadors. He uses us to build and expand His Kingdom just like a publicly-traded company uses people to increase their bottom line. Unfortunately, His church has become accustomed to a culture and lifestyle that looks just like every other church that is half-assed and quite honestly no different from the rest of the world. Are we content being a half-assed church or do we want to be world-class and pleasing to our Father who says to us “well done my good and faithful servant”?
Question: How do we get everyone living body life together as it is defined in the Bible? One of my biggest takeaways from talking with leaders is that we all have the same goals, and the same obstacles even though we don’t all have the same scriptural understanding; How can we get people to want what they don’t know that they need or don’t know even exists? How can we convince them they are “doing it wrong” when they are doing it the same way as everyone else in America (who is doing it wrong which is why the statistics are what they are). How can we convince them to change their lifestyle and traditions? We can’t and shouldn’t. We are not called to go into all the world and change other people. We are called to live out the gospel that we are to share in lifestyle.
And that is, I think, a key to all of this; Lifestyle. We focus all our energy into our Sunday production, and none of our energy into modeling the Biblical “Christian” lifestyle. And it is all-inclusive ( the Lifestyle, I mean). We focus on pointing out sin and pointing to Jesus. But the Body is supposed to be so much more- We should be showing the world how to live in sin without sinning (too bad or too often and continue to do it less and less). We are supposed to be self-sufficient, eat healthy, practice Godly medicine (not eat pharmaceuticals like candy), educate our children (not let the Government educate them). We are supposed to be educating ourselves constantly, not getting our news and information from the world (fake news agencies that exist to form our opinion). We are supposed to be knowledgeable about everything in our surrounding area (our community) because that is where we are called to make a difference. Unfortunately, first we are going to have to make a difference in our local congregational practices because they are not informed enough to see how it all fits together, and I am still trying to figure it out myself and always will be. If our homes and families aren’t doing it right, the churches and communities won’t see our set-apart-for God lifestyles.
Hundreds of companies spend billions of dollars a year to convince you to include them in your lifestyle. AND THAT IS WHAT WE ARE UP AGAINST. We are lucky that that Americans even include “Sunday service” in their schedules, let alone trying to mold their lifestyle to the Kingdom culture. And that is why we are losing; Jesus is not a part of everyone’s lifestyle, he is a part of their religion that they practice on Sundays for 1 hour, but no one even knows His real name, His heritage, His language, His personality, His Spirit even. All they know is church- and that is why they are church-minded. It’s all they know.
It may seem like I blame Americans, or blame the previous generation of church leadership- that’s because I do. But I know they were subject to the training of THEIR previous generation and so on. But one thing I have learned from my family I was born into is that at some point, you have to say you are just going to do what’s right and it doesn’t matter what happened in the previous generation or what the previous generation did. You have to take full responsibility of the Truth available to you today and set out on a mission. Period.
I will summarize the premise of this Mission approach here because it is essential to defining our Unity (in both the spirit of 1776 and the Spirit of God) using the internet and mobile media. A great Mission is successful because it has a large number of passionate “Followers” which ultimately become the Mission’s ‘Leaders’ or evangelists who eventually should be educated in the art of information war- Truth Warriors. As Americans with a mission (and Followers of the Christ), we have four basic goals:
Create more informed Followers (of Christ and the Constitution);
Feed the passion of existing Followers (of Christ and the Constitution);
Turn Followers into LEADERS (for Christ and the Constitution);
UNITE LEADERS who are intentionally divided (because of Christ and the Constitution)!
We recognize that this is very different than trying to sell a product. Because our ‘product’ is FREE (Freedom in Christ under the Constitution) and is the result of having passionate ‘Followers’ who act and have the same objectives. Passionate Followers, (if we feed their passion regularly) will follow Christ for a lifetime and many will become leaders in the cause of freedom; and indeed, WARRIORS in times of need. Although this is a huge paradigm shift, believe it or not this is how it was 200 years ago. This is another restoration attempt. A church is very much like a business, but what really separates church from business is the management STRUCTURE, not necessarily the management STYLE.
But let me briefly define “Follower” to those who may not be familiar with Social Media. A Follower is someone who clicks on a button because they want to be notified if any new information or material is available. It is someone who has expressed an interest in receiving tweets, or videos, emails, or Event Invitations, etc. It is NOT in any way shape or form to be compared to a religious following, or subscription to any belief system, doctrine, statement of ‘faith’. Social and mobile media allow us to deepen the bond between the Follower and his/her passions to keep their heart on fire. While mainstream media efficiently distributes information and entertainment content, it is impersonal and not always true. People do not have a relationship with the Fox News, Wall Street Journal, a record label, or MSNBC. But it is a personal relationship that is at the heart of a Follower through the Spirit-filled community.
Most churches, organizations and preachers still treat the internet like a mainstream medium, which potentially goes to anyone. They are simply trying to connect with as many ‘listeners’ as possible hoping to sway, or to entertain them (like a radio broadcast without callers). This is the way of the dinosaur media and anyone following it will walk off the cliff right behind them. This new paradigm focuses more on follow-up, AKA secondary communication. The goal then of secondary communications with Followers is to deepen the relationship with, and equip them. So we need to understand the Followers and their needs. We do want to grow the number of Followers, but we do so by empowering the ones we have. We want to understand people who have interests common to our already established Followers if we want new ones. For Freedom loving Americans this is very easy. EVERYONE on this planet except for about 1% of its inhabitants wants to be Followers of freedom through the Spirit- there are just some of them that don’t know it.
Our job as ‘Truth Warriors’ is simultaneously about numbers, but not impersonally. The numbers we focus on are 1. the number of Followers we have and 2. the number off Followers we can add.
Followers do not become Followers because they saw a commercial or DVD or a couple YouTube videos. Becoming a Follower is a process over a period of time which is different for different people. Today’s social media tools allow us to help with the process of relationship deepening in ways that were not previously available over the internet. The beautiful thing about true leadership is that it is a gift- we really don’t have to do any of the work there. Leaders are both born and built. But the Spirit moves all things. Americans sometimes become bogged down in their day to day processes and slowly become unknowingly arrogant. They not only do not ask the right questions, but simply stop asking questions at all because they feel their mainstream information is all they need to succeed and be informed (if even they are informed at all). But the key to growth of Truth dissemination is awareness which is directed by asking the right questions and utilizing available technology.
Today, new internet technologies have allowed us to interact and has allowed the growth and formation of huge active online communities. A great example of this is the Survivalist/ Prepper communities. The value of a Follower which is engaged and with which we have dialogue is hundreds or thousands, and perhaps millions of times more than a casual mainstream encounter. It is this ability to engage and have dialogue that is the key to utilizing the new communication tools. The survivalist community model I think is very similar to our own mission- we are seriously dealing with the survival of the church, a nation and its Constitution!! Not failing to mention the demise of our religious freedoms protected by that Constitution. Here is how we better come together:
“Social Media” implies relationships and we are trying to build strong relationships with as many people as possible. Relationships are not built with a single contact. They are, as stated, built in steps. To do this we need to know the steps to becoming a Follower, and how this must shape our communications and internet strategies. These stages of Follower development are very much like those which build any human relationship:
1. Find 2. Like 3. Engage 4. Join 5. Lead
First, a person must find us. This is the main purpose of a mainstream media campaign. It is an attempt to be noticed. Where the mainstream media fails, is there is no way to move directly to the next phase, liking. There is no ability for interaction, so, now what? People find things that they are already interested in. It is virtually impossible to get noticed if there is not already interest without spamming, and this is one of our biggest obstacles to overcome. Not only do we have to get past this filter in seeking Followers, but we have to have a compelling and truthful enough message to allow us to build towards the second phase, getting liked, with very little time to do this because our mission is a serious one. And the obstacle is a big one; Confirmation bias. The gospel of the kingdom seemingly contradicts the current understanding of most every denomination of Christianity. So our campaigns must be deliberate and meet every individual where they are. There is no “one size fits all” campaign. As Paul said, we must be “all things to all people”.
For example, the campaign can have a prominent mention of something specific that takes them to a special landing page on a website with information specifically relevant to the reader. That landing page will then take that reader to the next step in the relationship building process, i.e. a call to action, to DO SOMETHING while being also a hearer of Truth. One of the keys to successful marketing for decades was the ‘call to action’. It has always been difficult for anyone to take time to DO SOMETHING, but every 6 months that becomes easier.
We are surrounded by hundreds of calls to action, even thousands sometimes per day. One thing that has changed with social media is that the response to a call to action is much easier and goes across multiple platforms- we are generally one click away from a response of many kinds and can even give the individual the ability to choose themselves based on their known preferences without asking. The second change is that the call to action is much more specific and personal. To respond by commenting on an article involves having a relationship with the web site and the people that frequent it. So there is no need to reinvent the wheel. We sit on the shoulders of giants before us in the search for ways to share truth and freedom.
But…How shall they hear without a preacher? Being ‘heard’ is the key to being ‘Liked’. And this doesn’t have to be a paid position anymore, and I would argue that while it may have made some sense for a season, it doesn’t make since anymore. We don’t need career preachers any more than we need career politicians if we are successful in turning followers into leaders. There are dozens of great leaders available at the click of a mouse, and there is almost nothing you can’t learn from the internet, you just have to know what is true and what is false. If we have dozens of mature, educated leaders in every local congregation carrying out discipleship instead of one preacher delivering 30 minutes a week the 80-20 rule will be turned upside down. So if we have been found, the next step is being liked. The natural human instinct is to talk about ourselves and why we are so wonderful- especially if someone just LIKED us or one of our posts. But people like people who listen to them talk about themselves. The internet through social media allows us, the Missionaries – the movement, to listen. One of the goals should be that within a couple generations we have so many leaders that we no longer need people to receive a salary for what they should be doing simply because they can.
People, who comment on a blog post, reply to Twitters, make a comment on a forum etc., all have the sense that the community of which we are part are listening and are interested in THEM. Being a member of a community that listens leads to personal involvement on a regular basis. This can only take place if we have the places or virtual places where there can be dialogue with other community members. And LEADERS will automatically start creating their own wikis, blogs or posts etc. A Leader will jump at the chance to be responsible for forming and developing a community around the gifts they have. They will be responsible for developing a community for which they serve as a hub. There is no head to this body other than the conglomerate of all the leaders like the founding fathers intended; Let us turn this country back toward the whole Bible and be the example to the world that we are called to be. The same goes for our nation as it goes for the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth. This proposed community of freedom-loving, self-governing Americans is its own Leader whose Followers are constantly interacting and motivating each other; the Bible calls that discipleship.
People motivated by their personal passion are the life blood and the catalyst for internet communities. As an example, while there are millions of people that have posted to Wikipedia and many more that learn from it, there are only approximately 500 people that spend many hours editing and organizing the information submitted to make it clear and useable because they are passionate about it. These super users have been empowered through the tools which Wikipedia has made available; 500 people manage content that is used by 400 million people per month. We all generate thousands of personal contacts every month (unless you live in front of a computer like me). Yet we do not get contact information from the people we touch, nor do we otherwise engage them. We approach them with a last century mode of thinking. We need to develop and empower the largest number of these leaders by giving them tools such as web space, submission tools, encouragement, information, support, high level access to team members and encouragement. These volunteers are ultimately the strength of communities on the internet. They are a valuable resource that must be actively developed and actively supported. As Jesus said:
Joh 14:12 ¶ Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.