Charity

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by alexander9, Mar 29, 2011.

  1. alexander9

    alexander9
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    Our Youth Group had a discussion and one member stated that our Church does not do enough in the community. Being one of the most densely populated cities in the UK and with poverty and homelessness a problem he wanted to know why we don't do more.
    Although we give to charities we are never on the front lines.
    I was wondering what other church's do to help their local communities outside of their members?
     
  2. HAMel

    HAMel
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    I was wondering what other church's do to help their local communities outside of their members?

    Very few churches over here do little or nothing beyond their property lines.

    I suggested over a year ago (at a mens prayer breakfast) that we men need to start a program that encouraged all the members to pray. That as our prayer list for the lost and those family members who were ailing was growing to both sides of the paper. Each man could devote 15 minutes each evening in their closet and encourage each woman to pray during their day. This could be done Monday, Tuesday - Thursday, Friday with Wednesday being the regular mid-week worship time.

    Let me tell you. This idea hit like a 16 pound bowling ball. A year later I moved on to another church.

    I heard a story once of a bar owner who opened his doors not far from a Baptist Church. The congregation decided to pray the Lord to close those doors. A few months later the bar burned down. The bar owner sued the Church claiming their Prayers were responsible for him losing his business. On the witness stand the Pastor proclaimed that prayer had nothing to do with the fire.

    ...huh? Don't know if the story is true or not but the one thing the Lord encourages us to do is pray and ask for what we want. We are to be busy for the Lord.

    I am of the opinion that if the members of any church is willing to get on their knees ("...all those who can and will") and pray, the Lord will send those in need.

    A church can chase people all day long and will never catch anyone but prayer can produce miracles. If churches don't pray why go out into the highways and byways?

    We get the cart before the horse and who really wants to see some long haired, scraggly bearded tattooed dude sitting in church who's in need of a bath while sporting a gold chain around his neck? It kinda takes away from all those in their Sunday Go To Meeting clothes sitting there all proper and poised. And what kind of an impression would XYZ Baptist Church be making should some respectable family happen to visit that morning?

    Oh, the shame of it all.
     
  3. abcgrad94

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    Our church has held a few "Share and Wear" events. Basically, it's just like a big yard sale at the church, only we don't charge anything. We bring used clothing and household items and encourage people to take what they need.

    I think we've also done a free car wash as well.

    Every year our town has a fall festival and our church rents a booth. We give out free coffee or cider along with info about our church.
     
  4. nodak

    nodak
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    True evangelism and discipleship are the best poverty fighters around.

    Get folks saved and acting like it and they go from taker to giver.

    I live in a poverty/drug/gang town. You can give away tons of food and clothing, pay heat and light bills out the wazoo, offer all kinds of social programs, and MAKES NO DIFFERENCE. Folks are just as lost, just as hungry, just as poor as before you started.

    Get them saved and acting like it and they begin to take care of themselves and their families.

    Baptists aren't Wesleyans, but Wesley DID expect the miners, working people, and "rabble" to be gotten into small cells or groups once saved where they would be held accountable to clean up their own acts.
     
  5. JohnDeereFan

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    What's the focus of your youth group? How much time does your youth group spend in serious study of the scriptures? How many of them are being mentored by Godly adults or even, Heaven forbid, the elderly saints in the congregation? When was the last time your youth group went out to preach or share the Gospel one on one or even just hand out tracts?

    I'm not dismissing the idea of charity, but if you're not doing these things first, then you're talking about a social gospel, which is a false gospel.

    As Adrian Rogers said, "Charity is a noble thing. But if I feed a man and give him a coat but don't tell him that Christ will forgive his sins if he will repent and believe, then all I've done for that man is to make this world a more comfortable place for him to go to Hell from".

    What I would do is to teach the children about charity as a physical illustration of the Gospel (that is, God's mercy to us in spite of our sinfullness) and ask them to come up with ways that charity can be tied in to sharing the Gospel.

    In our church, we operate three outreach programs for the poor, the homeless, and pretty much anybody who needs it. It is always, always, ALWAYS in the context of the Gospel and not merely doing a good deed. As a result, we have to remain vigilant at all times that our motives are to honor Christ and to uphold the Gospel and not merely fall into a social gospel role.

    Admittedly, that isn't easy, but it is what we're called to do.

    ((By the way, this weekend, we're having our annual "Spring Tuneup" fundraiser for these charities, so please keep that in your prayers.))
     
    #5 JohnDeereFan, Mar 29, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2011
  6. JohnDeereFan

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    If this was one of those boards where we could give reputation points, I'd give them to you.
     
  7. JohnDeereFan

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    All good ideas.

    We've thought about doing something like that, but it turns out that we can help more people longer if we do charge. But it's never very much. You can usually get a pair of jeans or a pair of shoes for around $5 at one of our thrift stores.

    We don't do car washes (we're not against them, we just don't do them) but we do have something called "Spring Tuneup" (coming up this very weekend, as a matter of fact), where people drop off lawn mowers and bicycles and we fix them or tune them up for Spring and Summer.

    We have an evangelism team that does something similar to this.

    We go out to different festivals and fairs and NASCAR races and set up a booth to hand out water and sodas to break the ice for sharing the Gospel.
     
  8. alexander9

    alexander9
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    Various members of the church take it in turns to lead the youth group and the teachings are of a good standard.
    Although our sunday youth group is short and often based around the videos of Rob Bell, which are a simple way of putting a point across before discussing the matter in hand we have recently created a cell group. This has become much more involved in getting stuck into the scriptures themselves and appears to have made a marked difference. From this we have enabled more time for prayer and I understand how much prayer helps. However more recently we talked about the Gifts each of us have been given by God to be a servant unto him in relation to the parable of the talents (i realise it is a monetary term but it is a parable after all). I believe he has realised that he has the chance to help people first hand and that he has been given the skills to do so. Therefore i wanted to help with ideas.

    "For everyone that asketh receiveth". When we prayed for the people of our city God showed us that he had already given us the tools with which to help them.

    You are quite right when you say you help more by getting them saved and as such i will push for them to spread the word of God first and foremost.

    Despite the Lack of a Yard i do like the idea of a free Yard sale and the church would still suit such an event.

    Being an engineer and a bit of a grease monkey i do rather like the sound of your spring tuneup! I may bring the idea up. I wish you the best of luck with it either way and will of course pray for you.
     
  9. InTheLight

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    How about a mechanic donating the labor to do car repairs?

    Members of the youth group could pool together money and buy oil and oil filters and have free oil changes.

    Or a computer technician could donate time to fix or tune up computers.

    Teens could go into the homes of shut-ins and read the newspaper to them or read books to people.

    Think about things that involve free teen labor and very little outlay of cash.
     
  10. North Carolina Tentmaker

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    I am certainly happy to share with you the things our church does and other ministries I have worked with. First off, don’t let the nay sayers get you down. You can make a difference. Oh perhaps you can’t make a difference in the overall poverty rate, but you can make a difference in individual lives. And some of those families will also be saved as a result.

    One thing our youth group does well is food drives. They work with our local food bank, do can drives at church, at youth events, and have dinners to raise money. They work with the food bank for specific needs so it’s not just “bring canned goods,” but bring peanut butter or bring cleaning supplies, or something specific. We seem to get a better result that way.

    Then we work with the food bank making deliveries to shut ins and blind folks who can’t get to the food bank themselves.

    We also run a thrift store and take donations of clothes and toys. We do a big event at Christmas each year where we set up a store and bring families in to shop for free.

    Coats and blankets are a big drive item around here. Last year at Christmas that was our number one requested item. Kids are asking for a warm place to sleep or a warm coat over toys.

    We also do a backpack ministry at our elementary school. Our school lunch program here in the United States ensures that low income children get two meals a day at school for no charge. We even run our school cafeteria all summer so when school is out kids can still come in and eat. But the problem we were having locally was that a number of these kids do not get fed at all by their parents so over the weekends they go hungry. We are talking kids from 4 to 11. So we make backpacks of kid friendly food that we send home each weekend with our at risk kids. We also do a class so they know how to heat up stuff and can feed themselves soup and other stuff. It’s sad that we have to but we are doing all we can. We send home 40 or so backpacks every weekend now. Our youth and others get together every Thursday evening to pack the bags and organize the food for delivery to the school every Friday.

    That’s what we do, but you need to find what your local needs are and what you have the ability to do with your group.

    We have some other ministries our teens get involved in that are more specific but not as regular. In the summer they will visit our widows and elderly and mow grass and do light home repair type stuff. The boys will also cut, split, and deliver firewood for our elderly residents who still heat with wood. We still have a lot of homes that use only wood stoves and fire places for heat so having a good wood supply is a big deal.
     
    #10 North Carolina Tentmaker, Mar 29, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2011
  11. blackbird

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    So, the Chap says your church does not do enough in the community, huh???

    Tell ya what----why don't you try to give this chap a nudge!!! Get him over to your place and get him/her in the kitchen and whip up a bunch of sandwiches---Bologna/Mayo/Mustard on White Bread----make about a hundred of um---wrap them up individually and then take them out to the inner city where the homeless hang out---give those homeless guys a sandwich and a bottle of water

    When the weather man is calling for sub freezing temps----take your chap over to the local store and buy a bundle of blankets--take them to those fellas who got your sandwiches---give each of um a blanket this time----give um a toothbrush and toothpaste

    Take your chap over to the local Seaman's Center in Portsmith----buy everyone of those Seaman there a calling card

    SEE???? If your Chap is waiting for the church as a whole to go out and do something---------he'll be waiting longer than it takes for the "Cows to come home"------------you'll never get the church as a whole to do EVERYTHING---but teach the Chap that HE is the church and that he has two hands and two feet---and that HE is to engage in missions where he's at

    Your Chap's excuse for doing nothing is that he sees the church doing nothing---thats a flimsy excuse

    :saint::saint::saint:
    Blackbird
     
  12. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
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    good for you....too few of you unfortunately but Amen & God love you & bless you for the effort. When the Dutch were hopefully outnumbered & overpowered by the Spanish in their control of the Netherlands, the Dutch adopted a quote from Charles the Bold

    "It is not necessary to hope in order to undertake, nor to succeed in order to persevere" .....just undertake & leave it in the hand of God to succeed, but by doing the things that need to be done you will persevere.
     
  13. Earth Wind and Fire

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    BB, your OK...... like the cut of your cloth. :thumbs:
     
  14. JohnDeereFan

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    'Nuff said. Your church has far greater problems than charity issues.
     
    #14 JohnDeereFan, Mar 30, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 30, 2011

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