How is Your Church Poised to Help Your Community?
An encouragement for the church.
Every day they devoted themselves to meeting together in the temple, and broke bread from house to house. They ate their food with joyful and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. Every day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.
When I began studying the Book of Acts, I read something from a writer who stated that, “the Church at its BIRTH, was the Church at its BEST!” I’ve never forgotten that statement. We’re 2,000 years removed from that era, and the Church still has power and purpose. Oftentimes though, we as members of the Church need to be refreshed and revived with why the Church exists. The Church has been established to present a witness to the world and to help in establishing God’s kingdom on Earth.
As we read in Acts, there was a collective community of committed Christ followers. Their unity created a synergy to both BE and to DO (the) Church. These early believers were attractive to their community by how they cared for each other. As people saw their hearts of compassion, they desired to share in the fellowship. Now, this wasn’t simply a community of people detached from culture or issues, for in this same section, we learn how they sold their possessions to meet the financial needs of others. We also learn how they were engaged in daily prayer and teaching. They fed the hungry, clothed the naked and loved the unlovely. That’s the church “on focus!”
I am convinced that the book of Acts is set in scripture to keep the Church focused. As with any organization, drifting is possible. We drift when we forget why we’ve been created, saved, and called. We drift when we overlook those who look to us for guidance and consistency. We drift when we infuse our faith with elements contrary to scripture. Drift is real.
When I need to be refreshed on what the community around our church needs, I turn to Acts, and I also walk through the community around our church. It’s easy for me to arrive on my church campus and become oblivious to what’s actually happening in our church’s community. I also challenge our leaders to pay attention to what’s happening near and around our church. When we are sensitive to what we see in our community and what we read in scripture, the Holy Spirit provides the conviction to keep us focused.
The Lord adds
This brand-new church community in Acts modeled some best practices for all churches. We must gather regularly and scatter consistently. We must be willing to sacrifice for the greater good. We must trust the Lord’s leading in meeting needs while ensuring that we see the hurts of those in our community. These practices make the church attractive to those seeking more in life. The Lord is faithful to add to those churches who demonstrate His love in practical ways. He adds where He is best represented.
Pray this week:
Lord, help my church to represent You well. Help us to serve our community in practical ways. May we see the needs of those who are hurting, and may we willingly serve them with compassion and dignity. In Christ Name, Amen.
What needs can your church help meet in your community? How can you be a part of this?