As you read this article, there are kids in foster care (not far from your church) who are desperately in need of an adult mentor. Sixty percent of the convalescent home residents in your community sit alone and will never get a visitor before they die. Additionally, approximately 80 women will be raped and in great need of prayer in the next 60 seconds.
At the same time these people are suffering, there are people in your church who have the resources, desire, and calling from God to do something about such pains.
Jesus said in John 14:12, “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.”
God is challenging us to believe in Him to do big things in this world, big things that will undoubtedly involve loving people who are hurting. Can you imagine if there was a consistent influx of fresh ministry ideas by your congregation to help those in your community? These needs combined with the “people resource” in your church and the biblical mandate to address that need is enough to bring about a substantial change.
Imagine if people in your congregation were initiating contact with community agencies, building positive relationships, and securing partnerships for the ministry.
Imagine if visitors were coming to your church, not only to check it out, but to experience more of the love they consistently receive from your congregation.
My new book, Do Something, Make your life Count, is designed to help create such a culture in your ministry. The goal is to mobilize God’s people enough to get out and do something about meeting the practical needs of your community.
The vision can be made into a reality! The people of The Rock church gave the Mayor of San Diego 166,251 hours of volunteer service in 2009, a value of $2.6 million in labor and resources. How did we do it? We did it by simply serving the needs of the people of our city through volunteer-led ministries. We partnered with social services, the SDPD, and other local agencies to address the needs left unmet by our city’s budget deficit. We cleared trash out of parks, painted a recreation center, mentored kids in foster care, and visited the elderly. We worked with pimps, prostitutes, strippers, and much more.
Our church gave a total of 615,956 total service hours in and outside the church walls. Using the number of completed service hours became a simple and clear goal that everyone could wrap their heads around and rally behind. Based on our attendance at the time, this came out to one hour per person per week for 50 weeks. For a church of 100, this would translate into 5,000 hours for one year.
How convinced are you that there is a tremendous amount of firepower sitting in your church? God has a Plan to unleash this power and to do something God-honoring in your community. It is based on what I refer to in the book as the “5 P’s” that apply to Jesus’ life.
I have noticed that Jesus was Prepared to do something, had a simple Purpose behind what He did, and did not let Pain hinder Him. He also utilized the Holy Spirit Power and was fueled by a Passion to never quit.
I believe that each one of these “5 P’s” applies to our lives, too. We are Prepared to do something (Eph 2:10) and have the same Purpose as Jesus: obeying God (1 John 5:3). We will experience Pain, but it does not only have to hurt; it can lead to righteousness (Heb 12:11). We have Holy Spirit Power available to us (Acts 1:8), and we will need to exercise Passion in order to do everything God has called us to do (Luke 9:62).
Do Something shares practical stories of people who are faithfully fulfilling the “5 P’s” in their lives. In the same way Jesus did, they are serving others in their community.
Jesus said of true believers in Matthew 7:16, “You will know them by their fruit.” If God can bring about practical change in our individual lives, why can’t we bring about practical change and improvement in our communities?
In addition to the trade book Do Something, there is a six-week small group curriculum as well as a church campaign kit. These are designed to lead an entire church from the curriculum to the streets by conducting a community service project together.
My prayer is that the church would get out into the streets and do something about the pain and brokenness that unbelievers have no solution for. Let us be the hands and feet of Jesus to those in our own backyards.
For more information on how you can mobilize the people of your community and serve your city, go to: http://www.dosomethingworld.org. This Web site has 25 community ministry “How To” videos, PDF downloadable instructions, and a walk-through of the seven steps to serving your mayor. Examples of quarterly reports for the mayor and instructions on how we monetized our service are also available online.
In the end, we are not going to be held accountable for the size of the ministries we built. We will be judged on the size of the impact we made with those ministries.
Do not bury any of your firepower in the ground; Do Something.
Miles McPherson is the Senior Pastor of the Rock Church and Academy in San Diego, California and the founder of Do Something World.
More from Miles McPherson or visit Miles at http://www.milesmcpherson.com/