“Let us not become weary of doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up”
We’re living in a time when our communities need The Church more than ever before.
Yes, this is a bit of a cliche. But, let’s face it. The events that have occurred so far in 2020 have brought a heavy weight with them. From a global pandemic, to race issues, to protests, our world is yearning for Jesus.
And with this yearning, comes increased opportunities for your church to meet needs in your community through ministry and outreach. Whether your church is supporting a local food bank, serving under resourced students, or helping struggling single moms, now is the time to be even more intentional about meeting those needs. Don’t miss an opportunity of ministry that the Lord has bestowed upon you.
Here are 3 ways to strengthen ministry and outreach programs in the midst of uncertainty.
1 Provide Church Benevolence
There’s no denying it. We’re living in a time of economic uncertainty due to Covid-19. People are losing their jobs due to company closures. Small business owners are being forced to close their doors. Many individuals and families are finding themselves in difficult situations with real financial needs.
And with these needs in mind, a church benevolence fund can have a great impact not only within your church but also within your surrounding community. Something powerful happens when the family of God shares their possessions and resources to take care of one another and show hospitality. Not to mention, this act is biblical (2 Corinthians 8, Acts 4:32-35, Romans 12:13, 1 Peter 4:9). Use this fund to support a local food bank, host a backpack drive for under resourced students, or to help a family in your church who recently faced a home foreclosure.
- To set up church benevolence:
- Create a form where people can share specific needs.
- Have the finance team or pastoral staff monitor and review all requests/needs and determine which ones can be met.
- If your church uses SecureGive for digital giving, create a separate giving category specifically for donations allocated for benevolence.
- Provide giving opportunities to the benevolence fund by having a special weekend benevolence offering/emphasis or through creating a social media campaign to encourage benevolence donations.
A benevolence fund meets the unique physical needs in your community while providing and opportunity to minister and show the love of Jesus in a tangible way.
2 Encourage Community Outreach
The Church was never meant to be contained within the walls of a building. Right now, your church has an amazing opportunity to serve and give within your city, community, and neighborhood. Find needs and meet them both individually and collectively. A great way to get started:
- Compile a list of organizations within your area doing amazing work.
- Encourage your church community to serve and give financially to these organizations.
- Share information on your church’s website, social media platforms, etc.
As your church meets needs in the community, document it and share it during services, on your website, on social media, in emails, and everywhere else. In doing this, two things happen. First, you’re showing the givers in your church the practical ways their financial contributions are meeting tangible needs. Second, you can build excitement and momentum that draws more people into involvement. Regardless of if your church is back to in-person meetings on Sunday or you’re only online, ministry is still happening. Tell them about it!
3 Emphanize Stewardship
Biblical Stewardship is managing God’s blessings, in God’s way, for God’s glory. God is the Owner of everything we’ve been given and we are His stewards (managers). That includes our time, talents, treasure, and testimony. Nothing we have is ours, all is the Lord’s (Psalm 24). And because of this, God instructs us to be faithful stewards (1 Corinthians 4:2).
How we live impacts how we give. People in your church need help wisely managing all that God has entrusted to them (their time, talents, treasures, and more), especially in this current season.
Here are ways your church can help:
- Promote digital classes on financial freedom and provide content digitally on various stewardship topics for all ages.
- Dive into scriptures on stewardship. You can do this during the offering time in services, through sermons, short videos on social media, emails, and any other way you communicate with your church.
- Take a holistic approach. Address practical, emotional, and spiritual needs.
Our churches are all in uncharted territory. Despite the questions, the unknown, and the financial uncertainties, our ministry and outreach efforts do not need to dwindle. In fact, now is the time to strengthen and expand our ministerial efforts. We believe the best days of The Church are ahead. We may face challenges today, but they will build perseverance and a stronger church tomorrow.