Rev. Dean Mathis, CM’s Ministry Leader to Michigan Legislators, has been ingenious with the use of technology from the beginning of his ministry.
When his discipleship ministry started in 2012, Rev. Mathis soon learned that the majority of legislators from Michigan’s lower peninsula commute to the centrally-located Capitol, and that a long-standing Legislators-only Bible study was already well established.
Undaunted, and with the help of a volunteer, Rev. Mathis recorded his Bible studies on CDs so legislators may listen to them on the drive to and from Lansing. He called the Bible study on wheels his “Windshield Ministry.”
Rev. Mathis hand-delivers the CDs so that he may personally meet with Legislators and pray with and for them. In 2017 he delivered 1,185 Bible studies, which represents as many personal visits, and in the first 8 weeks of session in 2018, he has delivered 330 Bible studies to Legislators.
And now he is learning that CDs are quickly becoming outdated. Some vehicles don’t even have CD players, and so he is re-thinking his delivery method.
“I am working on an app that would allow people to access my Bible studies from my website and listen to them from their phones or other devices,” Rev. Mathis said. “I hope to build in a dictating component, so the study may be turned into text that can either be printed or downloaded.”
“We are exploring ways to keep current as far as technology goes,” he said. “All that is in the hopper and not finished yet, but I’m working on it.”
To maintain that personal contact which is so important in ministry, Rev. Mathis will write a one-page synopsis of the upcoming Bible study that he will hand-deliver to Legislators.
Even though they hold positions of power and high-visibility, legislators often feel cut-off and nearly everyone they know wants something from them.
“That face-to-face contact provides the opportunity to support legislators because they tend to get isolated,” he said. “I encourage them, support them, tell them the Lord loves them, and offer the spiritual help they need. I also help them learn from God’s Word the wisdom they need to do a good job as legislators.”
Dealing with anxiety is one of the studies Rev. Mathis has written this year, based on Philippians 4:6:
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
The next week when he visited one legislator’s office, her staff told Dr. Mathis she didn’t wait for the drive home to hear the lesson: “When she got that study she said, ‘I need this! I’m going to listen to this right now!'”
As beneficial as technology is it doesn’t replace a face-to-face Bible study. Rev. Mathis is still planning to plant a mid-week Bible study that is not in direct competition with the one already established.
“There is an unreached people group in the legislature who I hope to reach though a sit-down study and I need prayer support because I will have to open some doors to get that done.”
If you wish to offer prayer or support to Rev. Mathis you may contact him at [email protected]