I believe we all have a heart for our city – a heart for our community. But the question sometimes is, how do we reach out? What do we actually do? Where do we start with outreach?
Isaiah 32:8 says, “A generous man devises generous things…” It’s one thing to be generous. It’s another thing to come up with a plan for generosity. It’s about getting to the heart of what your city is crying out for and thinking like Jesus.
“And you know that God anointed Jesus with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil because God was with him.” Acts 10:38
To come up with a plan, you have to crack the code for your city.
Here are four key points to cracking the code:
You’ve got to figure out what is going on in the plot of land God put you in. Someone else’s outreach may not help in your city. It’s about paying attention to what’s going on. What’s happening in your city? What’s the reoccurring pain? Is it illiteracy? Incarceration? Homelessness? You try to crack the code.
2. Ask questions.
You’ve got to ask good questions to the right people. Figure out how to engage your community. You can find out from elder pastors in the community, police, EMS, from councilman. (He recalls a time he sent a team out to sit in an emergency room.) What is the pain there?
3. Activate it.
This can happen through sermons, ideas, conversations. It can be done through small groups, events or different leaders who have a heart for an area. There are people who wake up every day in your church thinking about pain. They wake up thinking about people who are shut-ins, or those who are trying to get job skills, or people in a neighborhood that is crime-ridden. Activate the people in your church who have a bent to serve and a heart to help others.
Do something. You can’t solve every problem. But you can do something. We can’t change the whole world but we can change one life. It’s creating cultures that serve and celebrating that. What you reward gets repeated. We can shout out and appreciate those who have a heart of compassion, who see things others don’t see or organize around an outreach. You’re thinking like Jesus when you think of ways to do good and bring healing to your cities.
Take a step by registering for #ServeDay18 at serveday.today!