Posts Tagged ‘community’

It can sadly be the case these days, that some churches have completely forgotten why they were built in the first place. I’ve heard of churches where there’s more in-fighting than caring for one another; churches where they simply seems to exist to promote their own achievements instead of promoting God in their community.

It’s sad isn’t it, because at the end of the day if we’re part of a church, we must be completely God focused, making sure our church is set for its mission, as directed by God.

When you’re looking for a club or organisation to join, do you choose the one you want to join based on how nice the building or the furniture is?

Or do you choose based on the number of members and how well the club/organisation is meeting their needs?

Personally I’d rather choose based on how well the needs of the members are being met, how about you?

Does the same apply when it comes to church? Are our churches appealing to those in our community?

What will make our churches attractive and relevant to the community around us will not be our programmes, buildings or social media presence. Rather, it will be the quality of our relationships with God, with each other and with the people we encounter in the community. ~ Henrik Andersen

Is your church appealing to those in your community? If not, it’s time to make the changes necessary to help your church build quality relationships with God and with those in your community.

Today I’m following up on from Saturday’s blog post (Volunteers) where I asked you to support and encourage those who volunteer in our communities and churches.

Everyone in a leadership role in our communities or churches, whether volunteering or employed, have to make decisions about the group or community they are responsible for. That in itself can be difficult, as just like in any walk of life, not everyone will agree with decisions they make. However that doesn’t give us the right to challenge or confront the leader, as just as I said on Saturday, they are the one that has been approved to have the leadership role, and therefore their decisions should be respected.

For example when it comes to leadership of a music group, the leader may want the group to sing/play a piece of music at a faster or slower speed than the music indicates, or maybe they want it played quieter or louder than the music states – Does that make the leader wrong?

Of course it doesn’t! The leader hasn’t simply decided to lead the piece of music in a particular way for no reason, they feel their interpretation of the music will add to the performance, and therefore their the group should accept their leader’s guidance.

Respect your leaders, regardless of whether they are paid or volunteers, because they do a difficult job, and therefore need your support and encouragement.

In so many areas of life we find people who freely give up their own personal time and talents to help others, expecting nothing in return except the knowledge that they’ve helped others.

Whether it running a kids’ football team, working in a charity shop, taking on a position within your church, helping those with disabilities, helping to educate others by leading evening classes, or some other voluntary act, people do these things voluntarily, and that is what others need to remember.

We can all be quick to make derogatory comments about the ability of the person who has volunteered. Many will think they can do better than the person who is in charge, but can they?

From experience, probably not! Even if we were capable of doing a job better than the person who has volunteered, we should be supportive and helpful towards the person, after all they have given of their time and talents freely, while we haven’t! They may not be perfect at the job they have undertaken, but they are doing their best – They wouldn’t have been given the job if those in charge didn’t think they were capable of doing a good job.

Volunteers aren’t in it for their own glorification, but are there to help others, so if you find yourself putting your trust in volunteers to lead, help, train or educate you or your family, don’t put them down or tell others you could do better.  Instead, always give them your support and encouragement.

Do you go to church each week?

If so, do you go because you want to go, or do you go out of habit?

Do you go to church to worship or to receive from God?

Church is not a one day a week thing. It also is not for one reason in isolation. I read the following description of church somewhere recently, which seems to sum up what church should be about:

Church is not just about the weekly gathering to worship and hear the Word. Church is 7 days a week because the people are the true Church. The Sunday thing is to gather, empower and send out. Then we need to go and ‘be’ Church in our community.

Are you ‘being’ church in your community, or are you lives just as a Sunday christian?

Be the church for God.

I came across the following on Twitter a few days ago, and it struck me how apt it was, give recent events. We’ve seen the emergency services work continuously in horrendous circumstances, for hours and days. We’ve seen communities working together despite their differences, and despite the difficult circumstances they themselves may be facing.

Strong people do what’s right and show up to help others. They may be tired and going through a tough time, but they find a way to be there.

When it comes down to it, I believe that in the worst of circumstances that is when the best of us will show itself. What would you do if you found yourself in the midst of some kind of disaster, such as those that have happened in the UK in the last few weeks?

Are you looking for simple ways to encourage your heart and nourish your soul?

In the last while I’ve given you some ideas which will hopefully inspire you to implement them in your own life, and over the coming weeks I’ll share some others with you.

So here’s today’s suggestion:

Read, listen, learn

They say knowledge is power, so read, listen and learn so that you have power.

I’m not talking about power over other people, but instead the kind of power that touches the core of our very soul. It’s the kind of power that causes change, change in ourselves, those around us and hopefully, eventually in the winder community in which we live.

So when you go to bed at night, read a book, during the day, listen to others and learn. Learn from everything and everyone around you, so you can understand yourself better and in doing so change yourself into a better person, as that will definitely brighten your day!

read listen learn


Yesterday in Up To Date, I talked about whether an older hymn was still relevant today. This in turn got me thinking about whether in fact the society we live in actually still thinks God is relevant today.

Well I think many in society are trying their hardest to make us all believe that God is irrelevant today, however I personally think God is as relevant today as he has ever been.

Whether we agree in or not, God has not changed, and our need for Him remains constant. Our bodies have spiritual needs that sadly we as a society have neglected for far to long. Just as our bodies need food and water, we need to feed our spiritual souls too, or they will starve. If we don’t eat or drink we can be sure we will die. Similarly if we do not feed our spiritual needs we starve ourselves of God’s love.

How much worse is it when we don’t even realize we are starving ourselves of God’s love?

Let’s make sure our community does not starve itself of God’s love, by spreading God’s message of love through our community.


There are loads of people in the world who are struggling in so many different ways – illness; loneliness; not enough money to feed themselves or their family; struggling to pay bills or buy clothes; unemployment…the list is endless.

Sometimes when we see all these adverts on the TV trying to raise money for a crisis or epidemic abroad, we can easily forget that there are many people in our own country, in our own communities who are in need or help. Maybe it’s easier for us to give to those charities helping those who live in other countries, thousands of miles from us, as it’s less personal for us, rather than truly looking around about us, and seeing the real need so close to home.

So as well as giving practical help and support to those who need our help, pray for them too, no matter whether they live round the corner from us in our own communities, or thousands of miles away.

people in need

Not Too Far From Here by Gary Rose

Somebody’s down to their last dime
Somebody’s running out of time
Not too far from here
Somebody’s got nowhere else to go
Somebody needs a little hope
Not too far from here

And I may not know their name
But I’m praying just the same
That You’ll use me, Lord
To wipe away the tears
‘Cause somebody’s crying
Not too far from here

Somebody’s troubled and confused
Somebody’s got nothing left to lose
Not too far from here
Somebody’s forgotten how to trust
And somebody’s dying for love
Not too far from here

It may be a stranger’s face
But I’m praying for Your grace
To move in me
And take away the fear
‘Cause somebody’s hurting
Not too far from here

Help me, Lord, not to turn away from pain
Help me not to rest, while those around me weep
Give me Your strength and compassion
When somebody finds, the road of life too steep

Somebody’s troubled and confused
Somebody’s got nothing left to lose
Not too far from here
(Not too far)
Somebody’s forgotten how to trust
And somebody’s dying for love
Not too far from here
(Not too far)

Now I’m letting down my guard
And I’m opening my heart
Help me speak Your love
To every needful ear
Someone is waiting
Not too far from here
(Not too far)

Someone is waiting
Not too far from here

Here’s the sign on our new building at Bellshill Salvation Army


Did you manage to make out what it says? It says “Church and Community Centre”.

I’ve heard it said a number of times, “I didn’t realise the Salvation Army is a church as well as a charity”. Hopefully our new sign will help remind everyone that yes, the Salvation Army is  a registered charity working in the community to help other, but that we are also a church.

So in answer to the question in the title of this blog post, the answer is both – The Salvation Army is a charity and a church.