- 42% of earth’s population use social media – 3.2 billion.
- Facebook is the most widely used social media platform. 68% of U.S. Adults report to using Facebook.
- If Facebook were a country it would be approx. 1.5-times the size of China’s population and the largest in the World (Facebook and world population data).
- Millennials are the biggest users of social media, with over 90% of the generation being active social media users.
- Shockingly, the average person on social media uses it for 2 hours 22 minutes a day.
- Twitter had 321 million user accounts in 2019, up from 75 in 2010. These numbers resulted in 500 million Tweets per day. (Browser Media)
- The fastest growing social media platform in 2019 is Instagram, with 1 billion users.
- The Social media giant Facebook also owns Instagram and Whatsapp.
- Generation Z prefer more anonymous social media platforms like whisper and snapchat to Facebook. Only 9% of teens say Facebook is their preferred social media platform.
- Videos and Stories are predicted to become the primary way to share content in the future.
So what does it all mean for the Church?
Well first off– when Christians and Churches actively educate themselves on what’s happening with Internet and Social Media trends, they’re really learning about where social interaction and relationships are heading. In order to reach people it’s vitally important to keep current in how the majority of people are choosing to build relationships and interact with others.
I applaud all pastors and digital missionaries who engage in this data and allow it to impact their ministries. To those who fearfully avoid some of these shocking trends– fear not! Just as our Lord has used many other technological advancements to spread the Gospel, He will not allow these opportunities to go to the wayside.
If you know that your interactions on Facebook and other Social Networking outlets could be used to share the Saving Message of Jesus Christ, but shy away from using these outlets to do so, you’re not alone. Many believers are intimidated to become digital missionaries. But remember: “Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world”(1 John 4:4). If every church and every Christian chose to consciously engage in Social Media with the goal of spreading the Gospel, think of what an impact we could have on the world and how quickly it could happen!
Where do you begin?
Well, first pray. Pray against the plans of the enemy and pray for strength and protection in every message typed-out and posted for hundreds or potentially thousands of people to read. Pray that the Lord will guide you in every word that you type and every response. Filter everything you present through the Bible and above all remember that this is not a place for anger or harsh words. Every message that is submitted into cyber-space is permanent, so be sure that you are representing Jesus Christ in a righteous manner that He would be proud of.
I would say the next step is to take it slow; one step at a time. Who is in your immediate circle of influence? Are all of those people believers? How can you show the love of Christ to them without being overbearing? Posting a weekly Bible verse is an outstanding way to allow God’s Word to do the work. The Bible teaches us: “For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart”(Hebrews 4:12). Whether it’s presented from the pulpit or the computer chair, it’s still God’s Word – amazingly powerful and penetrating with a transforming impact.
It’s truly as simple as being willing to share God’s Word and prepared to respond to any questions. We always need to be ready to give an account; “but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence” (1 Peter 3:15). You don’t have to be a pastor or Bible scholar to be an effective witness for Jesus Christ on Social Media platforms. You just always need to be prepared not to know how to answer a question and willing to admit that you will “have to look into that further.” The most important thing is not how quickly you respond but how accurately, humbly and clearly you respond and that you always follow-up.
“And as always, remember; Jesus doesn’t make websites but that doesn’t mean He can’t use them!” – Free Church Websites