The cultural tone today is divisiveness, judgment, exclusiveness, and discontent. The church has an incredible opportunity to be the bright light in dark and discouraging times, but we must rise to the challenge. It’s not “business as usual.”
We’re all grateful for those who are returning to church and moved by all the new people trying church, but our chief responsibility is to communicate how the person of Jesus offers what they are looking for.
Leadership and vision are essential, but it’s the grace of God and the kindness of His people that carries the strength of your church.
How would you assess your church in this area?
2. An Embracing of Biblical Truth Over Popular Opinion
One of the most common phrases I hear today is “I don’t know who or what to believe.”
If you spend just ten minutes a day on social media, you can experience the mind-blowing free-for-all of unlimited opinions. I’m not against social media, it has great purposes, and I participate, but it sometimes just wears me out. How about you?
Opinions are rampant, and the truth is hard to discern, but Scripture stands as infallible truth. If we first meet people with grace and kindness, they will listen.
It’s like a restaurant with good food or a mechanic that does great work or a doctor who helps you get better; people will get in line and wait! They are looking for solutions, not opinions.
What solutions to real problems does your church offer?
3. A Place to Belong Rather Than Merely Attend
Isolation is competing with belonging, and the church has an incredible opportunity to meet the real human need of community.
Fellowship may sound like an old-fashioned idea, but it’s a New Testament value. I’m not referring to a chicken dinner at the church; it’s about deep connection, spiritual unity, and serving others based on a shared communion with God.
- Belonging, in the context of the church, is based on a Holy Spirit guided pursuit of God. It allows us to be accepted as we are and to accept others as they are, with a passion for spiritual growth for all.
- Belonging is about shared participation in serving for the good of others. As you give, you receive.
- Belonging breaks the bonds of isolation and loneliness and creates deep and meaningful relationships.
When your everyday friendships come from this kind of belonging, they meet a most basic human need at a heart level.
How do new guests connect in deep and meaningful ways at your church?
4. Global Matters, but Local Is Home.
A global awareness and focused efforts in different parts of the world is undoubtedly an important biblical value for us to follow. It really matters.
There is also something powerful about faith in your own backyard, yet it is easily overlooked. The needs of people very near you are real, and so many of us can make a difference immediately.
Then there is something special about the place you call home that captures your heart and allows God to cultivate a burden within you to help make a difference. Your local church is one of the strongest ways to help see that happen.
What is your church’s plan to meet the needs of your community?