Recently I have conversed with three different individuals about something they needed or wanted to accomplish. Each one reminded me of a benefit that is found in being a part of a community of faith.
1. In a community, you can fulfill a mission.
One person feels called to a foreign mission field. It is a great and God-glorifying call. The issue is that it takes resources to make the work happen. It requires more time, money and talent than one person has alone. They needed a community to support them, encourage them, pray for them, and help fund the mission. If you want to make a global impact, then you need a community bigger than yourself to help accomplish it.
2. In a community, you can use your gifts.
Another person came to me to tell me about a gift they possess that they would like to use for God. They truly want to help other believers live a life for Jesus in every area of their life. Without being very connected to the Church, they wanted me to promote their idea. It was a sad moment as they realized they could not use their special gifts to help other believers without any connection to people of like faith. When you are a part of a group of Christians, you have a place where you can use how God has gifted you.
3. In a community, you can help more people.
The final person had this great dream to help people who are struggling in life. They recognized it was a bigger project that they could do alone. They wanted me to ask out leadership to help them in any way possible make this good work a reality. If you are going to dream bigger than yourself, you will need other people to help you fulfill your dreams. Whether it is feeding twenty people or helping a whole city, the more people involved will make the work seem possible.
All these people are loosely connected to our Church, and I am trying to help them in several ways. But the conversations with these people reminded me of numerous other ones I have had through the years. People will talk about how the Church is of no use to them, and then they show up in my office asking for our community to help. I believe that God desires for each one to be a significant part of his body so that more can be accomplished than we could ever do alone.