Saturday, October 24, 2015

Small Churches Impact Communities

If a brother or sister is without clothes and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, keep warm and eat well," but you don't give them what the body needs, what good is it? In the same way faith, if it doesn't have works, is dead by itself. James 2:15-17 (HCSB)

I recently visited with a pastor of a small church. He shared how his church feeds the homeless four times a week, maintains a clothing closet to help people when they need nice clothes for job interviews, and how the people in his church embrace the homeless who often wonder into their worship services. After hearing all his church was doing, I asked how many volunteers he had to make all of this ministry happen. To my surprise, he said TEN. I stood in shock wondering how ten people found the time and energy to make all that ministry happen.

What motivates such people? Surely not money, because none of them get paid, including the pastor. Surely not prestige, because few outside of that community realize all that church is doing. I only live twenty miles away and I did not know about all the ministry that church was doing. Surely not the hope of those homeless people cleaning themselves up and becoming tithing church members, as that hasn't happened in fifteen years of doing this ministry. Many have been saved, but when they clean themselves up, they go back to where they came from and live the life they should have been living before. It is a very transitional group. This pastor, and the members of his small church, are driven by the love of Christ to show compassion to those in need. They take seriously the command to show their faith by their works. Many larger churches talk about helping the needy, this small church does it.

They may be a small church with less than 30 in worship on Sunday, but they are impacting their community with the Gospel. We need more churches like this if we hope to push back spiritual darkness in our nation. Let us pray for God to raise up more volunteers, pastors and churches like this.

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Dr. Terry W. Dorsett has been a pastor, church planter, denominational leader and author
in New England for more than 20 years. He is a happy husband, a proud father and adoring grandfather. He is a cancer survivor and believes that God works powerfully through times of suffering. He writes extensively and you can find all of his books at:

11 comments:

  1. Awesome article about small churches doing great things for the kingdom!

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    1. happy to share what God is doing over at Apple Valley Baptist Church, Ayer, MA

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  2. Michael ShortsleevesOctober 24, 2015 at 8:24 AM

    Thanks for this.

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    1. I've always been a champion for smaller churches.

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  3. Appreciate your article. We serve have served similarly for over a decade. Most don't understand why until they look into the eyes of the hurting or the alone, and just love.

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    1. Thanks for your faithful service to the Lord.

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  4. I believe I know which church and pastor are the focus of this article. If I am correct, I believe it is correct to say that they have been under noted and under appreciated for too long. And the same can be said for others like them. Thank you, Terry, for highlighting their Kingdom service and contribution.

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    1. Apple Valley Baptist Church is the one referenced here and the pastor mentioned what an encouraging force you have been in his life.

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