How to use social media to serve your community

by | May 13, 2020 | Ministry

Engagement starts on social media. There, you can see opportunities to bring engagement in the form of service into real life. Taking action on opportunities presented on social media to serve strengthens both relationships and your church’s ministry in the community. Showing up in real life means more than any metric.

We know this. What does this actually look like? Let’s take a peek at what happened in my own life, just this week.

Message sent

The struggle bus arrived Tuesday morning. Like many parents, it’s a daily balance of working from home, keeping the house running, and overseeing my son’s schoolwork. This week has been a particularly hard school week, which seeps into everything else. The mood in the house, the added stress all made Tuesday morning not a great one for tackling my to-do list.

Taking a breath, I went outside to shoot a quick video to post on my Instagram Stories. I felt the need to share that this is hard, that the unexpected happens, and that we don’t have to let that dictate the rest of the day. I’d hoped sharing that part of life would encourage others going through a rough day – and maybe serve as a bit of personal motivation to get things done. A sort of “we’re all in this together” rallying cry.

The video goes up. I sit down to tackle a big project.

And then a blessing began to unfold.

My pastor responded with a simple message. He saw that the day was rough. That message alone would have been enough.

Action taken

The afternoon passed quickly, with music on as I wrote, researched, and completed tasks from my list. At some point, my mom brain piped up. “Don’t forget to thaw out the chicken for dinner. Stir fry!” By this time, the workday started to bleed into the evening schedule of dinner prep and answering final questions about my son’s schoolwork. The tabs in my mental brain ticked through work, dinner, school… work, dinner, school… “What’s on my list for tomorrow? What can I do tonight? Oh no, the chicken is still frozen…” Then I heard the ding of a text message.

“Sometimes days are hard. Bbq helps. By the back door.” My pastor had picked up a great BBQ dinner with all the fixin’s from one of my favorite local restaurants and quietly dropped it off.

Sometimes people, including myself, will say, I feel seen and laugh. At that moment, I truly felt seen. The intent of sharing my hard day had been to acknowledge that what we are all going through is hard, yet we still can choose how we’ll respond in those moments. My pastor saw a friend and member of his flock balancing a lot, acknowledged it at the moment through a quick direct message on Instagram, and took care of dinner – one thing he could help with on my bigger mental to-do list.

Use social media to serve

What opportunities can you see on social media to be the church? Sometimes it’s joining in to laugh at a situation and offer encouragement. Sometimes there’s a real need to be met.

Social media is truly one of the most powerful, versatile tools your church has in its toolbox! Be “listening” on Facebook and other platforms so you can acknowledge and meet those needs. Serving one another is, after all, what we are called to do.

BBQ never hurts either.