The “Fruitful Practices” series of articles highlights eight effective characteristics common among effective Kingdom-work and movements among Muslims. This issue continues the series with the 4th fruitful practice- recognizing the importance of social networks.
The Gospel Goes
While everyone is different, people generally gravitate toward others who are like them or who like doing similar things. For me, it works like this: I like football, so I can relate to others who like football. This principle applies also to Kingdom-building and to work among the unreached. If the unreached see themselves as different from those who attend church, the likelihood is high that they will never venture into church of their own accord. Some territories may not even have a church available yet for seekers to attend.
Historically, church planting meant literally setting up a church building or renovating one to be a church, and then inviting people to come. This might work in some places, but it is not effective in other places. Often the people do not come. It is not enough to just wait for people to come to church to hear the gospel; we must find ways to bring the gospel to them. We need to look for places that the unreached feel comfortable, pay attention to their social networks, and meet them there.
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