Every community has a story – a unique story. Every community has a character, a “feel”, and an attitude shaped by its own peculiar events and circumstances.
Does your church want to make an impact on your community in a meaningful way?
Listen to their story first.
Don’t rush in with your plans and dreams and schemes for what you want to accomplish. First, you ask what’s the story? What are the real issues, the real problems, the real needs?
- What are the unique needs where God has placed us?
- How are these needs reflected socially, economically, ethnically, environmentally, politically, and religiously?
- What arena of our community is the furthest from the utopia that God wants to restore?
- What special opportunities are found within our immediate sphere of influence (within a half-mile)?
- What burning issues are alive in the public’s eyes and brought to attention by the media?
- What needs and opportunities do the industries specific to our area create?
- What is the most significant change in our community in the last decade, and what need does this create?
- What are the largest community events, and what needs or opportunities do they create?
- Because of our specific location, what solution could we provide that no other church does?
- How would we describe the “atmosphere of lostness” in our community?
- What is the creation story of our particular community, and what insight does this afford?
- Does the history of our community bring to light any spiritual strongholds?
- What one positive change in our community would have the most dramatic effect in people’s lives?
He who answers before listening – that is his folly and his shame. Proverbs 18:13