Community transformation is the outwardly visible result of how we live in the world corporately as followers of Jesus. To be engaged in community transformation means that we, as followers of Jesus, are actively contributing to positive change in the broader community—not just within the church—in cooperation with God’s work and presence there. God is already at work in the world. The question is how we as his Body can cooperate and participate in what he is doing. Community transformation means our personal involvement alongside others to facilitate positive change where we live and beyond.
“And the one sitting on the throne said, ‘Look, I am making everything new!’” Revelation 21:5a
“Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.” Ephesians 3:20-21
Too often we look for change only in ourselves or only within our churches. God has much bigger arenas in mind to display his power. After all, he sent Jesus to earth for all of humanity. He wants the blind to see, prostitutes redeemed, the poor thriving, tyrants overthrown, children of the slums learning and contributing to changing their world. Our picture of God and what he wants to do is consistently too small.
With change that big, what can we even do? What is our role? How can we be part of this sweeping story of transformation in the world? Certainly we can’t do it all by ourselves. But when we band together with others and take small but determined steps, we begin to see that we are part of the change God is bringing.
So what does community transformation look like from the human perspective? The five essential expressions of community transformation are:
- Participating in a faith community that reaches outside of itself
- Praying for healing and reconciliation in society
- Involving yourself in social justice needs in the broader community
- Caring for God’s creation in practical ways
- Helping others cultivate healthy lives and relationships
You can purchase a discipleship guide that takes you into more depth in each of these areas here.
This blog entry is a part of a series on the 8 dimensions of discipleship. You can purchase the entire set here.
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