I’ve been reading a lot about wholistic spirituality (our faith should be in all parts of our life). I’ve also been reading about corporate spirituality as a part of our wholistic spiritually (the importance of relationships with other people as a part of our faith).
Think back to the very first Thanksgiving. We’ve all heard the story.
Some Native Americans and Pilgrims got together for a meal. They had almost nothing in common at the time, yet they created community.
Everywhere I look I see the word “community.” It is definitely a part of postmodernism (I know…that means nothing to you). I can explain that another time. Even churches are trying to create community (not that they weren’t before but they are making a bigger effort).
Something about me cringes when I see “create community.” If Pilgrims and Native Americans can do it, why can’t Christians who have SO MUCH in common. Why?
I think too many Christians view the church as an organization and not an organism.
Jesus was on a walk with his disciples and he was walking by the temple and other religious buildings and he told them all those buildings would go away. In essence he was saying that for so long God had been worshiped in those buildings, but they meant nothing to him now. In the midst of his relational community with his disciples he was saying the church was no longer those buildings, it was that group.
I think community is a test of our faith. I know it is for me. There are times when the last thing I want is to spend time with other believers of Christ. Just about all of those times I realize at some point that I’m showing the immaturity of my faith. I say a test of a faith because everything in our culture is about building up walls. We wear nice clothes and drive in cars that shut out noise. We have houses with fences around them, with doors that lock. The list goes on…yet God’s Word commands us towards community. Community for the church is now counter cultural.
America was founded on men and women wanting to leave Europe because of religion. The reason for them coming here was rooted in their faith. It would seem to make sense that the desire for the first Thanksgiving came out of something deep within them that understood that God desired for them to have community.
I wish churches didn’t have to create community, but that Christians would.