Categories
Church Leadership Good News

10 Ways Your Church Can Be Good News to the Neighborhood

I have a fervent belief that if we want to reach a post-Christian society, we have to be Good News before someone will listen to Good News.

Here are 10 ways you can begin transforming your church into a place where Good News flows from:

  1. If you have a building, offer a public bathroom and shower that’s open to whomever needs it during your office hours.
  2. Ask every attendee to get in the habit of bringing a canned food item (you get the idea) to church every week. Then start a food pantry that’s open a couple days a week for people to drop in.
  3. Buy things for the church from local suppliers. Avoid the big box (probably cheaper) stores for ones that support a local company. Encourage your church attendees to do the same.
  4. Encourage people who go out to lunch after church to be generous with tipping servers and conscious of how long they are staying. You want wait staffs to desire the church crowd, they are avoiding it at all costs now.
  5. Require church staff to live within the area you are trying to reach.
  6. Add a requirement to all board and staff job descriptions that they attend public meetings. (Schools, city planning, city council, county government, etc.)
  7. Ask adults to volunteer at the public schools. (Give staff lots of freedom to volunteer)
  8. Participate in organized community events. Cleaning up, planting flowers, helping with parades, etc.
  9. Make church property open to the public. (Playground equipment, skateboard park, community garden, host local festivals, allow the schools to hold events in the auditorium.) Better yet, turn all of your property into a community center.
  10. Create a culture of saying yes to community involvement instead of no.

These are my ideas. What are yours?

How can your church (and the people who go to it) become Good News to your neighborhood?

Categories
Church Leadership Good News

The Good News is You

 

 

 

Giant slice of lasagna
Photo by Gone-Walkabout via Flickr (Creative Commons)

 

Have you ever stopped to think that Good News is brought through you?

Sometimes I wonder if our ideal theology is a bit larger than the practical theology God is actually calling us to do?

We think global while God is likely thinking local. We get so lost in the vastness of our calling to change the world that we lose sight of being good news to our block, next door neighbor, or even our house.

Back when I was a kid sometimes I’d order something at a restaurant that was simply more than I could eat. The waitress would bring this massive plate of lasagna and my eyes would get big. As I readied my fork, mouth watering, anticipating the first bite– reality would set in. My dad would say, “Looks like your eyes are bigger than your stomach.”

Of course it was true. I had ordered a massive portion and my dad had amused me by letting me get it and thinking I could finish it. But he knew from the get-go that there wasn’t a chance I could polish off such a tall order. I’d try but ultimately there would be more meal than would fit in my stomach. When I had finally given up and pushed the half full plate away in defeat my dad would repeat the same phrase with a smile, “Looks like your eyes were bigger than your stomach.

The same is true with our desires to change the world, isn’t it? Sometimes we order such a big portion that we barely make a dent. We push away the plate and give up– and our Heavenly Father knowingly smiles and reminds us that our eyes were bigger than our appetite.

Perhaps the smarter thing is to order a portion we can tackle?

Categories
Church Leadership Good News Music

Greater things…

I think the visuals of this version of the song, coupled with the history of Northern Ireland… really adds the significance and desperation needed for this song. Greater things are needed in the city.

For those of us in ministry, the real question this song brings to the forefront is one of priorities. Will 2010 be a year when we lay aside our pet projects and church crap and actually bring Good News to the cities we live in? Or will we just continue “discipling” and “entertaining” the same people another year without ever compelling them to take action and live out what we believe?

Unrelated sidenote: I’m itching to get back to Belfast.