Urban metropolises are one of the leading areas of interest for church planters. Whether it is for targeting areas of resurgence in gentrification, fighting poverty, racial equality, homelessness, or immigration, the gospel must penetrate all areas of population. We believe in gospel-transformation.
The Apostle Paul liked to target areas of resurgence and areas with large populations, creating springboards for making disciples and planting churches (see my recent article).
Within the last several decades, the eastern seaboard has been a target for reaching people with the gospel. The low evangelical rates of major cities, such as New York, Philadelphia, Boston, and Camden, are just a few that church planters are targeting.
I recently utilized Google’s Shopping Insight’s tool to get some information about people within certain metropolitan areas. It’s a useful tool, if you know how to use it— especially if you’re an entrepreneur. The tool helps you see what people are searching for in a respective area.
So, I decided to check out how many people searched for a TV mini series—namely, The Bible Series. What I thought I would find was the opposite of what I found. From this chart (below), as you can see, the largest concentration of people were in the exact areas that church planters target—this is fantastic news!
Some observations from my findings:
- The data doesn’t tell us who is doing the searching.
- It is just data.
- It could likely be that those who are searching are already Christians.
- However, if they were Christians, it seems the southeast would be lit up?
- It is still good news.
This larger screen capture (below) shows the U.S.
My opinion is that if only Christians were Googling The Bible Series then more of the mid-west and southeast, which are areas of larger evangelical populations, would have been represented. However, it is likely that Christians may not need to Google what the Bible is or what the Bible is about, as believers already have an understanding.
This leads me to another deduction; perhaps the people searching for the information on the series are not believers at all, or perhaps they are nominal Christians, unchurched, or de-churched peoples? This seems highly likely. What are we to do with it?
In any case, this information should enlighten the church planter and the pastor, who are thinking about these areas or live within them. These charts should engage us to go into areas where people are hungry for biblical knowledge or a better understanding of who is the knowable God.
What are your thoughts?