When Jesus encounters people in the gospels, He sees past their immediate need. Not that it isn’t important! Beyond their need, Jesus sees a hurting person; an individual whom He cherishes and loves. Each person has immense value to Jesus. An untouchable leper is touched. A sick, marginalized woman is called “daughter.” A crippled man is raised up, forgiven, and healed. And these are just a few of the beautiful expressions of how relational and loving Jesus is.
And what a beautiful pattern this is for the church in its community.
Each neighbour we encounter, each person we hope to help is not defined by his or her needs –even if that is all we can see initially. That person is created in God’s image and of infinite value. But it might take some time and effort to see the things that Jesus saw effortlessly and immediately.
Is your church ready to see what your neighbours have to contribute?
Are you ready to learn to see them and love them as Jesus does?
A church that is ready to see its relationship with its neighbours in a new way will find that a Community Opportunity Scan (COS) opens doors to exciting possibilities.
A COS is a comprehensive process of discovery. It will not only identify needs, it will also affirm the unique gifts and assets in the community and in the church. Through a COS, you will get to know the people, organizations, resources and needs of your community first-hand. With this information your church can discern opportunities to…
- Create awareness of local issues
- Engage in community partnerships
- Evaluate existing programs
- Begin new initiatives