rebelling against low expectations

How can my church reach out to the community?


MADISON WRITES: My church reaches out to the community by doing bible studies and evangelism series, but we don’t really get involved out there. After reading Do Hard Things, I want to help my church get out into the community, but I don’t know what to do. Any suggestions?

Do you think the church should be doing more than bible studies and evangelism series? Or should we just individually reach out to the community by trying to get involved out there?

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  • I think you might want to talk with your church about getting out there. But by all means, go do it yourself! If thats something you are interested in- go for it! 🙂

    Whoop! First to comment!! XD

  • My church is less than a hundred people lol, so we’re a little small to do stuff like this. But I’ll look forward to reading the answers!

  • I’m with @GuitarwithArms:disqus in that our church is pretty small. Generally our church out-reaches include VBS and passing out New Testaments with invitations to come to church in nearby neighborhoods. The best thing we ever did was hold a VBS in a different city that was just really struggling. That was a blessing in so many ways. 🙂

  • I’m in the “small church” band wagon over here, (less than 100 people) so, we never do anything super large scale. What we do is read our community, and our congregation. What i mean by that is, we use the people we have to do as much as we can in an efficient way. Tough? yes, sometimes. Worth it? For sure. Like, when our church wasn’t bringing in enough kids to do VBS, we took our whole operation of Jesus loving folks to a nearby apartment complex. God gave us the maximum amount of kids we could handle with our volunteers. It was really cool to see God work that week! As a member of a small church, God has been helping me learn to be flexible as my church reaches out to our community as the hands and feet of Christ.
    *end rambling*

  • *Haven’t read all the comments* My Church is a medium sized – big Church (400-500 people on any given Sunday morning). We have several outreach programs to get involved, but I honestly believe the most effective way to reach the community is “door knocking” or (for big events) “tracking” (also called “blitzing”)…
    Every Saturday, our Youth Group goes out to a neighbourhood, knock on doors and invites people to Church… Also sometimes we have a big event at Church, so we’ll have “Tract Team” where most of the members go out and just leave flyers on as many doors as we can, when we leave a flyer for an event at our Church, it has the basic information about our Church and the event. All of our community focused events are free.

  • Great question. The responsibility of the church is to equip believers to live out their faith amongst their friends, family and community. Every individual is charged to use where they are at and the environment that they are in to share Christ. The church has lost its footing when they think that there are going to be big sweeps of conversions if they go enmasse. It should be stressed by pastors to teach the Word of God, and most importantly, live it. I am a big believer that we should let our words be few. Our mission is to submit ourselves to Christ with all that we have and trust that He will direct our paths. I wouldn’t ever wait on a pastor or church to begin that if it isn’t already in their hearts. Use your life to share Christ with those you touch everyday. Just your witness to them should be a real accountability factor for you to live what you preach. Step out on your own and God will honor your attempt to bring Him to others.


      • Hi Okie Gal,

        I have listed a couple of scriptures for a better explanation.

        I am an older woman who has done every kind of witnessing in my life. I have found that way too often we think it is our words that changes people but it is our life’s character that holds the power. As I look back at everyone that tried to share with me, their loudest words was their lives. I don’t remember much of anything that they said, but I always will remember how the lived.

        Ecclesiastes 5:2 Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few.

        1 Corinthians 4:20 For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power.

        In Him Always,

        • Okay, that makes sense.I’m big on making sure you don’t just shove the gospel down somebody’s throat but at some point they have to hear right? Like in Romans 10 where it says “So faith comes by hearing, and that from God” God has given us the job of speaking . I definitely agree with acting differently than the world though. Its just that I think seein only tells someone enough to be judged. Hearing brings faith.

          • I agree. There needs to be some sort of sharing of your testimony and the sharing of Christ’s sacrifice for our sins. And that can be done in a very kind loving way. But after that, they will be watching you very closely to see if it is real. I would be readily available for any questions they might have and keep loving them with a His love. More often than not, you will not see immediate results, but with prayer that God’s Spirit might move in their hearts, it will not be in vain.

            I believe that these past two generations have been exposed to so much hypocrisy in professing believers lives, that the lost want people to line up with their profession. So we need to pursue righteous living at all times, without any compromise or it validates their beliefs when we fail. But if we do make a mistake, God is always faithful to forgive. It is also a good time to discuss forgiveness with whomever you are witnessing to so they can see that we are all sinners saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.

            I am sure God will always be with you. I love your obedience.

            In Him,

          • Thanks so much for taking time to explain! That seems like the most biblical way of teaching Christ, and you’ve seriously helped me to understand it a lot better. Thanks for being so patient with me.

  • Hold a block party, movie night, wine tasting , beer tour, start a community garden, book club, etc. Invite the community

  • Absolutely I believe the church should be involved in the community. How is it supposed to be a light if it’s hidden under a bushel? It should be a light on a hill, with light spread into all the areas around it. So part of the purpose of the church is to impact the world (which includes its direct area) for Jesus Christ.

    Let’s see… invite a special speaker to come to your church, then mobilize the youth in your church to spread invitations to the neighborhoods in the area. Organize a VBS. Pass out gospel tracts in the area around your building. Those are just some ideas. Some churches are better suited for one area of ministry (for example, a lot of adults can start a bus ministry whereas a church with a huge group of teens and fewer adults couldn’t do that. However, teens can run a very effective VBS that parents and adults couldn’t because of work schedules.). So build your services and other ideas around the capabilities and particular gifts of your specific body of believers.

    Lastly, keep it gospel centered. You can have all the awesome programs and get togethers in the world, but if the gospel is not taught in love, it is nothing. Hope this helped!

  • My church is pretty small so we try to be involved with ministries that are already working in our city. I think that includes a ministry that helps unmarried mom’s to raise their kids well, one that serves homeless and poor people, and few literacy programs. Volunteer so you can build relationships with the workers and thier clients. And talk to the elders so you can get the church in on it. Hope this helps!

  • I don’t know if this would exactly be considered “getting out into the community” but what my parish does is they go and pray in front of an abortion clinic for a few hours. They pray that it will shut down and they also pray for the women who choose to have an abortion. Sometimes the women pull up in their cars and talk with the people who pray. Our parish really tries to give them resources, support, and prayer when they choose not to go through with their abortions.

    Just an idea. Hope it helps you!


  • Might I suggest the use of Gospel tracts? (Perhaps such as those available from Ray Comfort’s Living Waters or Chick Publications, etc.) Street evangelism can also be done as a group.

          • Someone who kind of riles things up a little bit. It’s like if I posted an article on Revive that I knew was very controversial and a bunch of people were passionate about but all disagreed on, and I just sat back and enjoyed the show.

          • Just an abundance of discussion-provoking questions over on Revive, that’s all. 🙂 (And on here before Revive existed…)

          • Well, looking at Lauren’s definition, actually you’re not a pot-stirrer. A pot-stirrer sits back and watches as debates start up; you jump right in! Maybe that makes you the soup…

          • But I stir it as well, cause I also start it. I’m not sure what I am then… and in my defense, I do not jump into every single one! In fact, just this morning, I wrestled with myself for half an hour about jumping into one on SoG, and finally decided not to. Maybe I’m learning!

          • Ooh. Sam and I were just talking about that! Congratulations on not jumping in. (You are talking about the modesty one, aren’t you?) I started a discussion with him on here.. he commented on the modesty survey post.
            You appear to be learning, but you’re rubbing off on me!

          • Yeah, that was what I almost commented on… ahhhhhhhh, I want to SO bad! But I figured that particular topic had about as little to do with me as possible, so I should just keep my little opinions all to me onesies. 🙂

          • But dude, as a girl talking it looks like I just want to protect my right to wear pants and short sleeves!
            I’d appreciate a guy to back me up…

          • Okey-dokey, then, I still feel like this would be a better girl on girl conversation. But since a guy did start it, I might as well go put in my two cents. We’ll see… never mind about my making progress. It was temporary. 😉

          • Yeah, girl-to-girl would be better… (though when we girls start talking, we often go around in circles because we don’t really know what we’re talking about, so we can only get so far with those conversations) but he did start it. I’m sure you can make up your progress… some other time when there’s not an important conversation to jump in on. 😉
            *twiddles thumbs waiting for your comment*

          • No, that’s not so. It depends on the girl. Girls aren’t any less capable of discussing serious topics. I’ve seen girls out-argue guys plenty of times. Although they usually WAY out-talk them at the same time… Ha, ha!

          • No… I mean, we don’t know what clothing can cause problems for y’all and what is entirely innocent. 🙂 My sis Lilla can out-argue anybody, I know girls can beat guys.
            Wish I could refute your last sentence…

          • Looks like you’re going to have to wait a while, cause it got flagged by the Reb’s moderation. 🙁 It might be a while yet…

          • Nope. I don’t see anything remotely like a catch-word. Oh, well, it usually comes through their system within 24 hours, so it’s not bad. Besides, it may keep me out of a debate. 🙂

          • Yeah, they’re good with getting to comments quickly. 🙂 Could be… or not. We will have to see!

          • Why were you saying protestant…?
            I wonder if there’s somebody who reads these comments…

          • Beats me… about the comments, not the protestant statement.

            I was explaining why the fact the pope declared pants immodest didn’t really matter to me. 🙂

          • Yeah, the pope’s declaration (especially from 1928) doesn’t make a difference. (And didn’t he have any better things to do in 1928 than to launch a campaign against immodesty?)

          • Probably… but then again, Catholics and Protestants alike spend a lot of time on issues that aren’t really that important. Come to think of it, I could probably rephrase your question, “Doesn’t Taylor have better things to do this afternoon than engage in a debate about modesty?” 🙂

            Well, historically, the pope could have been addressing Mussolini’s massive excess of power that would take place right around there and in the next decade. 🙂 But I don’t really blame him there.

          • Yeah. Speaking of better things to do, I’d better get going with other stuff. I could PM through Revive, but here it’s very tempting to stay on the page and just wait for another comment to appear. With Revive new messages don’t show up for a couple minutes regardless of what I do, so I normally work on something like math while I talk.

            I thought 1928 was in the middle of WW2, so then he would have had other stuff to do. I have got to brush up on current history.. I know ancient history well, but the newer stuff is so out of place in my head!

          • Ohh, did you maybe say the contraction of “he will”? That one caught a couple of my comments before I figured out what it was.

          • Just found where I said something wrong… I meant that when we get talking *about modesty*, we go around in circles.

  • Advice. So I know what most people will probably say, but I’m gonna ask anyway. So I want to start a youtube channel to make my own christian music on. Youtube’s age requirements are thirteen+. I’m nearly thirteen. I know tons of people who disregard age requirements on social media. I really want to go ahead and do it. I think age limits on those kind of things are mostly because of the bad stuff that other people can put on there, so the only reason I can see why I shouldn’t is simply because that’s against the rules.

      • About 6 months. I just didn’t want to say my exact age because lots of people say that the internet’s super dangerous and you shouldn’t post your age and all that stuff.

        • I see. I was asking because if it was only 2 months or less I would’ve said it would probably be best to wait it out.
          My advice is to ask your parents if you could use one of their accounts. That way, they can closely supervise your use of the profile. I’m not going to tell you not to post videos because that could be a great ministry! I just think lying about your age, even to a computer, may not be the correct way to go about it.
          I hope that helps!

          • Ok, thanks for your help! I made an acount for something that I’m not old enough for in the past, but then I did it I didn’t know that I wasn’t old enough. I tried to delete the account as you are supposed to, but it never got deleted. I’m still using it now because I feel like if God wanted me to not use it, it would have gotten deleted. This might not be the right way to think. I’m just not sure whether continuing to use the account is wrong. But as for creating a youtube account when I know that you have to be thirteen, I’m just gonna wait.
            Sometimes doing hard things gets complicated. : /

          • Hey Olivia, I think that it’s important that you involve you parents, when youend up making your channel, also explain to them that any one can access these videos. Because though YouTube allows you to use it, you parents might not want you to use it. My Dad had said that if I wanted to post videos I’m not allowed to have my face in it. But I’m not sure how your parents will have regulations or anything but yeah like @percussion_4_Christ had said definitely involve you parents. 😀 Hope you grow in wisdom, to see through the complicated-ness. 😛

    • Hi Olivia, I completely understand how you’re feeling. P4C and PJ made great points, especially about involving your parents. I would also recommend waiting a month before you do anything. I know at the moment you really (really!!) want to make an account. However, that feeling (from personal experience) will fade somewhat given a little time. You’ll still want to do it, certainly, but you won’t be as desperate, and you’ll be able to make your decision with more clarity and wisdom.

      Another thought: If you start a YouTube channel, I can promise you that someday you’ll look back and feel rather silly about the videos you posted on there. That’s life. XD Which isn’t to say you can’t put out quality content now, but your ability to do so will only get better as you get older. That being said, you can wait until you know more and can do better (again, which isn’t to imply you won’t do a good job now), or you can start now. It’ll be harder than you expect, but you’ll learn and grow as a result of it. 🙂 Ultimately, pray, involve your parents, and give it time!

    • As a musician, I think you may want to spend those six months really refining your songs, so that when you are 13 you can post 3-4 songs at the same time that are well polished. Subtle things. Do a recording and listen critically to it. You and your audience will better appreciate the result and you won;t have to break any rules

  • My church does stuff like VBS and the Alpha course. Our youth group also does stuff like free car washes and coke-giveaways. a lot of what we do is always open to the community to come and participate.

  • My church this summer did a “camp of life” which is a camp for elementary students. we witnessed to the children while doing fun things to show God through games, activities, crafts, and actual teaching time. it helped develop friendships and a spiritual connection between young children and God. but the kids told there parents what they learned so the families then learned about God as well. it was an awesome experience.

  • My church does a heap of things in the community, some of them include a soup kitchen, Youth Group, disabled people club and church. They also do an annual camp which anyone can go too and is heaps of fun! There are so many other ways as well!

  • I have some insight because our church went through a similar struggle a few years ago. I’ll describe our story, I’m sorry if it is a bit long winded.
    Our church is on Long Island (in a suburbs not too far from NYC), so where we are most people 16+ drink and smoke pot. Our church is one block away from a movie theater, so a lot of teens would chill in the alley between them and smoke and drink and be excessively loud.
    At some point, our pastor was teaching and they were so loud that he shut the door to the church … but then it hit him (and later, us), that closing the door was the exact opposite of what we needed to do, that doctors aren’t for the healthy, but for the sick.

rebelling against low expectations

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