“Two are better than one…For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10.
Times of trouble will come. Our Lord says, “In the world, you will have many troubles” (John 16:33). Troubles are unavoidable, and many churches find themselves in it due to low attendance, city ordinances, dissension, building problems, lack of leadership, etc.
A church may have low attendance and are barely making the bills. What will such a church do if one of their own needs help?
A church may experience a fire incident that destroys their building. Where will they hold their services now? Can they rent AND pay their mortgage?
A church has a pastor, who left unexpectedly and accumulated several unpaid bills. Who would they seek assistance from to help them get back on their feet?
A new city ordinance has put pressure on a local church to bring their old building up to code, but they don’t have the finances to comply. How can they stay open if they can’t comply?
Some churches are part of a network of denominations that can help in these situations. But even if the church is part of a network, they still might not have the help needed. Many denominations now are struggling to keep other churches open and might not be able to assist during times of crisis. Also, these networks and denominations sometimes encourage a monochurch culture, seeing their assembly as the only viable and worthwhile church in a given city or area.
In each of the scenarios above, local churches can come to the aid of other local churches in order to keep the kingdom advancing. I am certain you are thinking of ways to help these churches now!
By keeping as many churches as possible open and viable, including ministering to the community, will help the locale in ways unseen by most. By allowing a church to fall, you may be closing the only soup kitchen in the area. Another may be the one ministering to and praying for schools. Others may specialize in helping single mothers get back on their feet. If these churches fall, will the other churches be able to pick up where they left off? Probably not. The community would be hugely affected.
Churches can help each other and their communities more efficiently when partnering together.