Below is another guest blog by Dare 2 Share's President, Debbie Bresina. By the way, I'm so grateful for her leadership during this time. First of all, she has been prayer-fueled and fully dependent on the Spirit to guide. Secondly, she's been an excellent leader for our team. She constantly encourages and shepherds the staff at Dare 2 Share toward being fully at rest in Christ, while making strategic shifts that will exponentially "energize the Church to mobilize youth to Gospelize their world." Finally, she has really allowed me, as the Founder of the ministry, to spend way more time preaching, training, doing podcasts, Zoom calls and writing. I can't think of a better leader than she is and I praise God to have been working with her for 25 years now. Below is her excellent explanation of the shifts we have made as a ministry in light of the current pandemic. May these shifts inspire you to join the Gospel Advancing movement so that "every teen everywhere hears the gospel from a friend"... especially in light of the isolation and desperation many teenagers are feeling at this time of quarantine and shelter-in-place rules.
“Be still and know that I AM GOD…”
DARE 2 SHARE RAPID RESPONSE
Although many of us are experiencing a wide range of emotions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, there is no doubt that this crisis has created a unique opportunity for the gospel to be heard by people who are more open to spiritual conversations than ever before. As Christ followers, we can either prayerfully push through by asking God to redeem the moment or ignore this opportunity in the midst of our own difficult circumstances. As a ministry, Dare 2 Share has always sought to have a balanced approach, seeking first wisdom and then following it up with decisive action as we felt led by the Holy Spirit.
Over these past few weeks God has provided one major conviction: The gospel cannot be quarantined!
Well before the end of the first quarter, our team went into “rapid response” mode. We believed that God was calling Dare 2 Share as a first responder for gospel mobilization during this unique time.
Most recently we’ve realized that we must remain faithful to our mission while pivoting our strategy toward a new reality that will most certainly influence the “how” of what we do well past the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. Below is a list of the 5 strategic pivots that we have deployed.
Pivot #1 – Multiple Devotional & Training Resources for multiple audiences
Using Prayer-Care-Share as a strategic foundation, we pivoted all our energy toward this call. Multiple resources were either revised or developed in order to mobilize the Church, especially youth ministry. Daily video devotions, specific curriculum designed for use within a virtual environment, open network sermons, and even a comprehensive 40-page eBook were made available free of charge to our constituents and given freely to ministry partners to use as well. We also presented a special webinar for leaders.
Pivot #2 – Life in 6 Words Mobile App audio feature
In addition to encouragement and Biblical training, we also wanted a practical tool. The “Life in 6 Words” mobile app has been a faith sharing staple for years and in October of 2019, the app underwent a major overhaul that had gained a lot of momentum. Still, the app was meant to be used to facilitate a gospel conversation when face-to-face. We quickly dreamed of an audio feature that would enable a gospel conversation that was still personal and relational, but virtual. See these slides for a quick overview. The app developer was willing to drop everything to expedite this feature. It was expensive, but we moved forward in faith and the feature was released before Easter! You can download the Life in 6 Words app from your app store or visit li6w.com.
Pivot #3 – Lead THE Cause Virtual
Dare 2 Share’s week-long summer events called “Lead THE Cause” are an important aspect of the mission to energize the Church to mobilize youth to Gospelize their world!” We wholeheartedly believe that this generation, unleashed with the power of the gospel, has the potential to launch another historically great awakening.
On Monday, April 13th we announced the cancellation of the three live events that were planned in Chicago, Denver, and Washington, DC this summer in order to rally youth pastors and teenagers toward a NEW event, Lead THE Cause Virtual.
Pivot #4 – Gospel Advancing International Leader Training
The last two years Lead THE Cause also included an international track for indigenous global leaders desiring to receive additional training in order to initiate a movement in their home countries. Plans were in place to host 30 international youth ministry leaders the summer of 2020.
With international travel virtually impossible, we went to work to decouple the international track from the traditional LTC event and start developing a strategy for delivering training to these leaders a different way.
Pivot #5 – Dare 2 Share LIVE Adaptations
Finally, as summer ends and a new school year begins, we have no doubt that many things will have changed. Although we are praying for an expedient vaccine for COVID so that people will be safe to gather, we cannot be certain when this will happen. Thankfully, Dare 2 Share LIVE, the one-day US-based multi-site simulcast was already designed for streaming. For this year’s Dare 2 share LIVE scheduled for October 10, 2020, we will use the same “good, better, best” grid to develop alternative plans that accommodate relevant restrictions for any youth group anywhere.
We thank God for a Godly board of directors as well as the hundreds of committed prayer and financial partners that He has provided. Please know that we praying for you as well, that God keeps you safe and healthy.
Until every teen everywhere hears the gospel from a friend,
Dare 2 Share