Here are six short tips that every church can consider to increase their impact in the community right away.
1. Lead By Example.
Become a leader of change by being a leader in change. Nothing means more to followers than a great example. Choose to connect to a group or organization in your community:
Stop by the Boys and Girls Club. Inquire about the PTA. Visit the Salvation Army or YMCA. Reconnect with alumni groups or local Chamber of Commerce.
Need some more examples? Checkout:
How My Church Became Missional And How Yours Can Too
2. Prioritize The Community's Needs.
No church has unlimited resources and the needs around your church can be overwhelming.
Answer two questions:
Who are the people most like us who live near us?
What is the difference we want to make in their lives if we are faithful and obedient?
Avoid the temptation to do too much too soon — remember church activity is not synonymous with community impact.
Do less so it can mean more.
What is one thing, one activity, meeting or program, that you could stop doing for yourself in order to have more time to love and serve others. And remember, do what you do on their turf!
For more guidance, checkout our free ebook:
4 Steps To Help Your Church Impact The Community
3. Explore Your City.
Get real curious and ask a lot of questions.
Interview other leaders.
Schedule appointments with representatives, business, and community leaders.
Ask people, “What would make your life better?” "What is our greatest need from your vantage point, and what would our community be like if that need was met?"
Then ask your church, ”What can we do about that?” “What has God given to us so that we can give to others?
4. Observe Those Around You.
We have certain talents, abilities, experiences and resources that combine as gifts to bring to those living outside the faith.
When people experience love and kindness with no strings attached they are shocked and grateful.
Ask God to help you notice what others beyond the walls of your church bring to you, too. Consider ways to make connecting and loving more mutual and never disdainful.
5. Decide To Be Intentional.
Regular interaction helps others test your commitments.
Expect suspicion to fade as they “taste and see that the Lord is good,” through your consistency.
Schedule encore encounters.
See the same people so they can learn to trust you.
Don’t merely gesture, take committed, tangible action.
Don’t over promise.
Engage honestly and repeatedly.
Show up enough to deliver quality goods or services.
Make doing meaningful things for others a lot of fun. Remember when it is full of fun, the behavior is likely to be repeated.
Take time to honor what others are doing.
Talk about what it means to make someone smile and how it feels.
Be creative. Imagine having people outside the church bragging on your church because your people are so useful and helpful.
“But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect . . .” 1 Peter 3:15
Praying for the pastors reading this blog.
P.S. Shoot me an email if you need someone to talk to today... remember, "No Man Is An Island," and that means no pastor is one either.