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The Final Day of the AbR Media CC2017

We began the day by worshiping the Lord in song and then continued in prayer for the children of Africa led by Bernice Gatere, Executive director, TWR Kenya,

Pastor Shodankeh Johnson of New Harvest Ministries then led us in his final session of the convention, reminding us that we need to use His principles to tell His story in His way. The final principle Shodankeh maintained was that God is in the business of multiplication. We need to embrace multiplication according to Matt 28 v19,20, Matt 24 v14, Mk 16 v15-16.

We need to embrace multiplication. Discipleship is a call to follow Jesus. It's a call to have a relationship with God the Father. It's a call to be fishers of men. At times multiplication will lead to conflict but we are in a family, responding to the same Father - a divine partnership. We cannot do the work alone – we need to rely on the Holy Spirit, he said.

In closing Pastor Johnson acknowledged that many of us are discouraged that we don't see the fruit, but if we do it God's way, he suggested, we will see the fruit.

When we leave this place, let's ask the Lord for forgiveness for the way we've done things in the past, and let's do it God's way. I have three questions for you, he said:

1. Is God well pleased with what we are doing right now?
2. Is the work well done? Can you say with all your heart that I've done my best?
3. Is the Word well used? Or are we using it to fit what we want?

Andrew Steele Director of ICTI then took us in plenary to consider how we should relate to listeners in a changing media environment:
Listener focus is important, he said. The golden rule is to love our listeners. We should always start our programme planning analysing our audience. We cannot reach effectively believers and non-believers in the same programme. When Jesus spoke he used everyday stories and he respected his audience. Our aim is to serve our audience needs and not ours.

Joseph Kebie and Etienne Kiemde shared their experiences of how they considered their audience when planning their programmes. Assistance in helping us become better audience-centred programmers can be sought by asking for help from those who can guide us in AbRMedia.

Paul Federwitz, International IT Coordinator Lutheran Bible Translators led us through Storytelling on Mobile and the use of Social Media.
There is a changing landscape in Africa today regarding a means of communication. Statistics show that the majority of Africa rely on the mobile phone more so than on computers and that the use of the smart phone is not only being found in urban areas but increasingly in the rural areas of Africa.

Paul said that we need to be our audience; need to be with our audience; need to get immersed in the use of WhatsApp, and other social media so that we know how it is being used among the audience we are wanting to reach.
Resources are primarily found at www.mobmin.org of the Mobile Ministry forum. Global Mobile Usage and Scripture App builder details can be found on this url.

Berni Dymet of Christianityworks led us in considering Reaching the hearts of the Unreached
Reaching the unreached person as Luke 15 depicts is reaching for that one person who is lost – even the church is full of unreached individuals, Berni said.

What is the goal of our Proclamation: it's the submission of the sinner to God according to John Piper the American preacher. However there is a problem and that is, the spiritual blindness and hardness of heart.
To communicate effectively we need to consider that short window of opportunity in any presentation that depends on – the product relevance; personal relevance; intrigue; and topicality. In each society there are issue blockers that turn our audience off and yet there are also aspects that the audience finds interesting. When we shine a light on an issue that is relevant to our audience then they listen, pay attention and will possibly accept it.

Jean Dao – re the Dafi people group in Mali
Gave time for the Muslim group on the radio since it was a Community Radio and this has also helped in building relationships.

Here's how we get it wrong, Ecclesiology affects our Missiology and that affects our Christology or understanding of Christ. Let's turn it around by finding out who Jesus is and let that affect our Missiology which afterwards affects our Ecclesiology. Jesus was radical, and what I understand by the radical Jesus affects how we do missiology.

How we use language; the power of a question to engage the imagination; the tone of voice and speed of delivery all need to be taken into consideration. We not only need to think out of the box but also where there is no box at all!

Chairman of AbRMedia, Jan-Erik Nyman led a discussion with four others regarding DMM (discipleship making movement) Programming and Follow-up through traditional media.
The aim is to find a person of peace in response to the programmes which are focusing on needs of the people. Once the person of peace is identified, he is visited and the beginning of a Discovery Bible Study takes place possibly with the person and peace and a group of people like his family and/or friends. The intention is then that each DBS group shall give birth to new groups generation by generation. Various folk with different experiences in their regions shared how they were progressing in using this model. On the Swahili coast, for example, 170 DBS had been started after identifying the person of peace.

CLOSING ADDRESS: Steve Harling, President of 'Reach Beyond'
The call of God on Steve's life was a challenge as he was called to leadership of a mission – he pleaded for a vision from God. A small voice led him to the passage in Revelation 7 v 9. His mind was drawn to the words 'from every nation, tribe, people and language.' He sought to be connected emotionally to this multitude God would gather one day. The challenge even increased as he saw representatives from unreached groups who had gone through horrendous situations praising the Lord one day in a meeting.
The task ahead of 195 nations and 4300 unreached people groups of which 833 are in Africa and 677 of these in the Buffer Zone loomed large before Steve. He wondered, how does God feel when one of these is lost!
Steve asked, Can we ensure that every one of these groups has a life-changing disciple making church planting media strategy? And how long would it take to happen? He acknowledged before us that we have the tools; the partners; a vast platform for raising awareness and catalyzing prayer; access to information that can help us prioritise and strategise; friends with resources who are willing to help; a powerful message with a proven record for changing lives and communities; churches that will pray, give and go; and finally and above all we have the Holy Spirit to enable us because we have Christ in us.

Can we develop a media strategy for reaching all of the 833 UPG's of Africa, he asked? I think we can do this, together and in our time for the glory of the Father and the fame of His Son, he said.

The challenge was stated: by 2030 No Tribe left Behind
To accomplish this we need to Pray; Collaborate; Strategise; Mobilize; and Act with bold faith.
It will take above all LOVE to achieve this in 12 years.
Steve's conclusion, 'It's one thing to be lost, it's another thing to lose the one you love'

Jan-Erik closed the Convention by asking us to hold hands in a circle and to pray for each other.

By: Norman Brierley

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