To determine what local churches can do to become a better reflection of Christianity one must first understand what the Bible says about the church. The Bible tells us that the church us a gathering of Christians, committed to a common purpose (the Great Commission), and they share the core values of loving God (the Great Commandment) (p. 99). In Matthew 18:20 we are told that â€œFor where two or three gather together as my followers, I am there among them.â€ (NLT) Sometimes people incorrectly identify the church as a building or structure or a certain denomination of a religion. However, it is really about the relationship of the believers.
I feel one step that Christians can take to help the church reflect Christ better in the community would be to become involved in a small group within a church. We learned that relationships are important in the building of a church community and what it means to be a Christian. As a leader or a member of a small group they can encourage others to serve one another, respect one another, and in a true sense of the Scripture, love one another (p. 101).
nother way that Christians can help the church reflect Christ better is to become a mentor to a new believer. Christians should welcome them into the church community. The church should recognize diversity within the community and be accepting of others ways of expressing oneself in the way they dress, the food they eat, or the ways they choose to entertain themselves. If the church community shows acceptance of an individual and recognizes their diversity, the individual can grow spiritually within the group without feeling the pressure to conform.
I believe there are at least two different steps that Christians can take to better help change the perception of the church within their community. The first step would be to actually reach out and actually get to know their community. Mr. Towns says â€œa community helps nurture faithâ€ (Towns, 2007) which is very true but very few Christians actually know their community. By holding a public event such as a family movie night, a cookout in a park, or some other event so that they can simply interact and witness Christ to those they meet individually, they will get a better sense of how their community thinks and will respond to their ministry. In doing this, they can better hone their ministry skills to properly reflect not only the morals and teachings of Christ but to spread that like wild fire throughout their own.
I believe another step that Christians can take is to use new age media, such as the internet, and put videos and photos of local baptismâ€™s up so that the community and others around the world can witness what actually goes on so that the fear for non-believers is reduced. The text says â€œthe Barna Poll suggest most people today want to know God, but wish to do so outside the established churchâ€ (Towns, 2007) and I would tend to agree with that message because of the declining church attendance and the removal of God from society, there is a social stigma to being a â€œchurch goerâ€ because it is not the norm for their community. I believe if people had the ability to view the different facets of the church congregation in their own privacy, they would see that it is not that scary and would be more willing to come out and commune with fellow Christians and get to know Christ.