During His earthly ministry, Jesus ministered among crowds, trained 12 disciples and invested deeply in three of His followers — Peter, James and John.
Jesus focused on a few in order to ultimately reach the many.
What if our churches did the same thing?
With an estimated 5.8 million people in North Carolina who don’t know Christ, lostness abounds all across the state. Yet there are certain areas where there are higher concentrations of lost people. These places are called “pockets of lostness.”
A pocket of lostness is a geographic area, usually up to a 3-mile radius, in which most people don’t know the Lord and are not being engaged by the local church. These areas often have very low numbers of disciples and healthy churches.
Additionally, pockets of lostness are often places of great cultural, ethnic and economic diversity, resulting in isolated population segments within the pocket.
Instead of focusing on reaching an entire pocket, churches can focus on reaching a certain group or segment within a pocket. Doing so will help the local church be more intentional in reaching these groups.
Each segment requires a unique strategy for outreach and engagement. One must understand a segment’s context in order to make connections and share the gospel. For example, one segment may be middle-class families who are extremely busy, while another may be singles who love entertainment and are devoted to specific causes. Another segment may be Indian Hindus.
Reaching population segments like these and others calls for intentional, relational models of disciple-making and ministries to be implemented.
Some North Carolina churches are already reaching segments within pockets of lostness. Other churches are exploring ways they can become involved through new or existing ministries or by partnering with other churches.
If your church is located near a pocket of lostness, consider joining a local strategy team to reach those pockets. Or, if your church is far from a pocket but has a niche for reaching a certain population group or segment, there are a number of ways you can be involved, as well.
By adopting a particular segment, your church will take ownership for spreading the gospel among the precious souls in that segment.
by Strategic Focus Team / Baptist State Convention of North Carolina
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