As I write this, I’m wearing a t-shirt that has one of the key values of InFaith written on the front. It says simply, “Reach local. Change lives.” Every one of us has a local in front of us: a sphere of influence or a sphere of need that’s around them. Last night we had some friends over for dinner to get to know each other better and pray through a few things together. We had a great dinner. My wife and I ministered to this couple, and it was wonderful because it was my local. It was right in front of me.
Let me give you a couple of guidelines to help you reach local and, hopefully as a result, transform and change lives. First, look to the obvious. This was a couple we see every Sunday. We greet them, they’re involved in Bible study, and they’ve been going to church as long as we have. But, they needed ministry.
Second, ask God to show you. Who is it you’re supposed to minister to who’s right in front of your eyes? It doesn’t have to be a big thing; it doesn’t have to be expensive. It could be as simple as calling someone up and ministering to them and praying for them. Ask God to show you that person.
Third, don’t let familiarity stop you. Sometimes we are blind to the needs around us, because we simply are too familiar with them. For example: a person came to our house the other day and I invited them back to my office. They said, “Wow, you need to get your rugs cleaned.” As I looked down, I thought, “You’re right! We need to get new carpet or clean the one we have.” It was so familiar that I didn’t see it. So, this is a call to minister to your local and not to let the familiarity of your local blind you to the needs around you.