It’s the first time I am having a birthday when I have this website up and running. I started this site at in the beginning of the year. I started it so I can have a place to share messages and connect with people. There are a number of reasons I started this site. Little did I know that a pandemic would hit and I would need it all the more.
I have mixed feelings about people taking advantage of this site. Perhaps one day I will report a detailed analysis of the analytics of this site. But for now here are some general facts. Since I started the site I have had over 2.5k users who have come to the site. During the main part of the pandemic I consistently had new visitors, as for returning users I had over a hundred. Lately it has dropped. A number of my members have taken advantage of my site. About 25 take advantage of the extra stuff I do here. A number of people share the messages, participate with the discussion questions on the site and on their own with other people.
While people leaving comments is the only way I can know for certain if someone came, I can see through google analytics where how many people from a town are on my site. And then from phone calls I have confirmation of certain people not coming on. You can’t make anyone do anything. You know when we are in a church building, people are there and you can see exactly who you preaching to. If someone doesn’t like a message they normally stay for the entire thing (not everyone). Normally there is a sense that they need to be there next week regardless of whether they enjoyed church the week before. Having online church I recognize there are many online options so there are many places to go. I hope that is the case for those who are missing. However being online gives people the ability to be anonymous. The level of accountability is reduced. So I am sure many just don’t attend anywhere.
While overall I view this as a negative, in a way there is a positive aspect. The positive is that crisis reveals character. It kinda filters out those who aren’t serious. Bible talks quite a bit about shakings. Gives time to focus on those who are truly hungering and thirsting after truth.
One such person was at a paintball field. I went paintballing this pass Sunday as a birthday celebration. I threw an invitation to a bunch of people online and 24 came and it was intense.
When it was over we were all leaving and as I was driving home my sister called me to tell me that one of the cars wanted to stop somewhere to eat. So we went to Dairy Queen. I’m on my 300 raw diet so I wasn’t gonna eat the food there. So I broke out my carrots and Jalapenos and stuff and sat to eat with them outside. A group of 10 of us right outside of Dairy Queen, bruised up from a full day paintball warfare ended up having a 2 hour Bible Study. LOL during my birthday celebration. No off day when it comes to ministry. Someone (Mr L) there had a ridiculous amount of questions about the Bible and God. One person (Mr J) at the table doesn’t go to church anymore and was participating heavily in the conversation. Mr L told everyone the table that I had a website and how he went on it and how he thought I was the best preacher he has ever seen (I guess he hasn’t seen many preachers). That same guy even joined the prophecy series I did. At the end of the conversation Mr J, who had left church a long time ago, came up to me and said thank you for being willing to go along with this conversation. Most people in church when you have these type of conversations dismiss it right away. Then on the ride home a different person and I talked about trying to make a comeback with God and about baptism.
Then yesterday, someone from Florida called me and told me that he was looking for a church for his friend who lives in the town of one of my churches. He went on my website and he saw the way I was dressed and how I wasn’t wearing a suit and he appreciated it. He read my blog post on clothing and he was impressed and now he wants to send his friend to my church.
You know in ministry you are not going to reach everybody. You won’t appeal to everybody. But its days like the ones mentioned where I can see the few that are being reached and it makes it evident how worth it ministry is.
So I am happy for another birthday, because it means I can begin another year with God.