The latest entry in the Gaming With Purpose column comes from someone I recently met (digitally) online via Twitter and Discord. She’s the leader of a Christian gaming group called God’s Gamers, and she graciously gave of her time to write a little bit about what’s going on in her community. If you would like to contribute to this column, please message me and let’s talk!
My friends in the gamerverse know me as JeanneDArcc, often referred to as Jeanne (in whatever pronunciation your heart desires), and with some divine inspiration, I founded God’s Gamers in November 2018. Sometimes we don’t see what mission God is going to set us on until we are in the midst of it. We may try to turn back, fight it, or even reject it but God has a plan for each of us and that is precisely how God’s Gamers began. I sank into a bit of a depression for a while and would absorb myself in Elder Scrolls Online (ESO), a game I’d just discovered, which quickly consumed me. After a while, I realized God had a different plan for me than wasting my time in the toxic, lonely gaming environment I had placed myself in.
When I discovered streaming I understood that God was sending me on a mission to create a safe space for believers to come together on this crazy digital horizon. Very nervously I started streaming on Twitch with no clue what I was doing. First, I started putting together intense sermon-like streams, diving into Bible reading plans from YouVersion and studying them deeply before and during the streams. I then met my very first Christian streamer friend, SuperShadow.
Meeting him was a huge moment for me. I thought I was the only one out there! I began hanging out in his streams, asking questions, making friends, and eventually found multiple communities; God Mode Activated, GodSquad Gaming, Life.Church, TheWay_TV, CrimsonConquerer, and many more, who were on similar missions to the one God put me on. I was thrilled!
My stream style evolved into different themes each day, lightening the mood and intensity, and a small community began to form. I needed to figure out how not to get lost in the gaming world but still enjoy the game I loved to play, so I started a guild in ESO called Our Morning Song, stemming from Psalm 59:16;
But I will sing of your strength; I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the morning. For you have been to me a fortress and a refuge in the day of my distress.’ Psalm 59:16
Building a guild in ESO is not a difficult task, but starting a faith-based guild certainly comes with its challenges. While traveling through the different zones of Tamriel I would tell the general population in each zone about our Christian guild. Without fail, I would immediately receive hateful, hurtful and discouraging comments, but then the heartwarming responses asking to join would come and encourage me to keep going. There was, and still remains, the risk of trolls joining and harassing our members, so invites were sent cautiously but with trust that God was going to lead the right people to us and help us tackle any challenge. Through this method of recruiting, I was thrilled to find a couple of other Christian guilds. Two of them ended up merging with us and becoming part of our community, which is always an exceptionally exciting experience for us. Over time, God’s Gamers community was born and our mission statement was clearly defined.
God’s Gamers is a safe, loving community focused on nurturing one another, and fostering an atmosphere of learning, growth, and faith. We are here to provide Christian gamers with a non-toxic place to game, grow, play and pray with and for each other.
Over the last year we have certainly faced many challenges such as losing leaders and members, fine-tuning our specific mission and purpose, figuring out exactly what God wanted from us, and fighting the toxicity in the gaming community and remembering that it is not against this world that we fight but against the dark forces of the spiritual world.
For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12 ESV
It has been incredible to see how God has blessed this community. God’s Gamers is now based out of Discord where gamers from any platform or game can centralize, hang out, find non-toxic groups, self-promote, and grow together. We have a growing leadership team of 11 people within several departments; Community (partnerships), Committee (blog), Outreach (recruitment and promotion), and Gaming (in-game events). We’ve recently rebranded, reorganized to ready ourselves for further growth, and began running weekly in-game ESO events to get members grouped up and playing together.
Our website offers a weekly scripture-based blog, “Looking for Christian Gamer” (LFCG); a space to promote GG Partners and other communities, Playlist Project is full of various genres of Christian music, a forum for IRL discussions, and whatever else God wants us to do. I am also thrilled to say we are beginning to seek and offer partnerships with other Christian communities. With our mission, we recognize that we are not a perfect fit for every gamer and partnerships are an amazing way for various faith-based communities to connect and support one another and our members.
I was asked what sets God’s Gamers apart from the other Christian gamer communities, and funny enough after watching a couple of videos from one of my favorite streamers, SouzyLive (previously known as Pastor Souzy), I realized what really makes us different.
God’s Gamers seeks to share and uphold Biblical truth, and encourage fellow Christian gamers to be examples of Christ in the gamerverse. We strive to be a support system for fellow Christian gamers on their faith journey.
As a Christian it can be so easy to feel like the only mission that matters is to bring people into relationship with Christ. This is a vital and incredible mission, but something I’ve asked myself for a long time is…what about current Christians? Are we left to fend for ourselves?
When I came to Christ it sort of felt like all of a sudden I shouldn’t need help or support anymore, that I had all the answers and should go out and bring other people to Christ.
What we are not told nearly enough is that believers need to support each other as well. We were designed to be in relationship with each other. If we are not working on our own spiritual health and understanding, strengthening our own relationship with Christ, how can we expect to know how to help others come to Him?
Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17
God placed God’s Gamers in a position to be a support for current believers to tackle these challenges together. We focus on being a safe place for those of faith to come together and tackle the difficulties of mixing our beliefs with the gaming world. We welcome any and all who seek a loving, family-friendly, non-toxic gaming community but our primary focus is to support other believers in this journey.
For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them. Matthew 18:20
Upon entering the community, all new members are encouraged to introduce themselves in the #introduce-yourself channel, and make themselves at home throughout the server, site, and in-game. On top of our channels for general, in-game and faith-based discussions, our server offers channels for GG Content Creators to promote themselves, a GG Merchandise shop, and of course silly spaces for sharing art, memes, and our favorite tunes. We strive to build close relationships with each member and love to have conversations about life, faith, games, scripture, and even some tougher and more controversial topics in our family atmosphere.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16
What started as one person streaming in the wrong category on Twitch alone for hours every week is now a thriving community full of loving people who share the mission and desire to do what we love in a way honoring unto God, and that is what it is all about.
Thank you JeanneDArcc for sharing your story and community with us!
Check out God’s Gamers at the following links:
GG Website & Blog | GG Twitter | GG Youtube