"The weakness of the Occupy movement is its lack of a unifying message, other than the mantra about representing 99% of America."
Lionel Beehner, "Will 'Occupy Wall Street' movement fizzle out?" USA Today, 10-13-2011
It's a little early to know if the movement will fizzle out, transform, mature, and bring about change or none of the above. However, as time goes on, this lack of a coherent, unifying, doable message is being noted, if not as the cause of the movement's eventual demise, but at least as a stumbling block to it making any significant impact.
No matter what the outcome of the Occupy Wall Street Movement, it gives church communicators a challenge.
We have a unifying message
Our unifying message is the Great Commission. In some of Jesus last words to his disciples, he told us what we are to be about and what we are to do when he said:
ity in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20
We gave our message: to make disciples, to baptize them, to teach them everything Jesus taught.
Our challenge is to communicate it, all of it
We aren't only to communicate so that people make decisions about Jesus. We are to keep communicating until they publicly identify with the church and Jesus as Savior and Lord. We are to keep communicating until they learn to obey all the commands Jesus gave us.
We are to fully fulfill the Great Commission.
Are your communications doing that?
Take a prayerful, hard look at your communications. Church communicators today have every imaginable tool available to them to not only reach their communities, but to equip their congregations and impact their world. Ask yourself:
- What are your communications accomplishing as you push piles of paper and rivers of digital information out the church office?
- Are you seeing people come to know Jesus?
- Are you touching the unchurched, unreached people all around your church?
- Are you seeing your church members grow to Christian discipleship maturity?
- Do your people know the Word better, are they involved in outreach to the poor, are they able to share their faith wisely from time at your church?
All of your communications should be created with obedience to fully fulfilling the Great Commission as the motivating message behind all you do. The goal of Effective Church Communications through this blog and our training website is to help you do that.
We've got to keep the motivation, mission and message to help our churches fully fulfill the Great Commission as the foundation for our communications work. When we do, our church won't face the danger of slipping into irrelevance as the Occupy movement might, but we will have an eternal impact on the people in our communities. Far more than any media popularity, we will be doing work pleasing to our Lord.