inside out

November 3, 2005 | 3 Comments

Inside OutAs part of their 30 year anniversary, Willow Creek is doing something I think is pretty cool. They are doing something called Inside Out which involves going out to serve their community for 30 days. They also have a created a blog to share stories. Here’s is a partial description from their website:

How do believers “do church” in their neighborhoods? We do it being part of an Inside Out team that shows compassion and does good—in our own backyards. For 30 days after our anniversary, we will go out our front doors and into our communities and do good. See? Not complicated. Join a team or better yet…be a project leader. All it takes is a grateful heart and a desire to make a difference. See? It’s easy.

I do think this is good stuff, but I think this is the kind of thing that needs to move from being a campaign to a convention in church communities. Can every church make this a part of our ongoing culture? Should we never emphasize something like this as a special campaign, because then it will have a stopping point in the mind of most people? Or do we hope that emphasizing a campaign like this will create and transform the culture of our local church communities?

  • The problem with a 30 day campaign is that it only lasts 30 days. Most people would become heavily involved in their communities for the 30 days and then that would taper off.

    Better to change the culture than to promote a campaign.

    Should not the church already be in the community?

  • My thoughts exactly John.

  • I am a long time member of Willow and a part of the team doing the Inside Out blog which you mention. For years Willow has had a culture of serving the poor and those in need. It is an integral part of who our church is. Serving others in the name of Christ takes many forms at Willow. The Inside Out celebration through serving is a moment in the flow, not just a short term campaign. In organizing serving teams in neighborhoods we build lasting relationships among Willow people and those they are serving. One project leads to another and the culture of serving takes on a life of it’s own.

    We’re also filling community food pantries, providing gift boxes to elderly nursing home residents, and gift bags to incarserated youth.

    You may be interested in another blog that we have that tells stories from our volunteer teams that are serving hurricane Katrina survivors in Waveland, MS. We’re rotating in 25 member teams every four days for the rest of the year.

    Like the Inside Out Blog the hurricane blog is a vehicle to inspire other Willow folks with what God is doing in the hearts of those serving others. Stay subscribed to the blogs we’ve got great stories coming.