We weren’t looking for a community. We probably didn’t even know such dinosaurs existed. So what was the draw? Why did we suddenly want something so badly that we didn’t even know existed? I can only explain it as something God lays on our heart. Close friends, people who act as the hands of Christ in your joy and in your sorrow…this is one way we know God.
Christ didn’t go it alone. He didn’t choose only one apostle, He chose twelve. Even God, in human flesh, desired community. Communion and Community stem from the same Latin root. Its little wonder, don’t you think? Sharing of gifts, life giving. We are drawn to it. We are built for it.
So, what that community/communion meant in day to day living was shoulders to cry on. And hugs when you need them most, even without asking. It was meals delivered to your family when you are sick in the hospital. It was a call to be more vigilant about living as a Christian by the beautiful examples around you. It was families knocking on your door to see your new baby. It was meals together and glasses of wine and laughing until it hurts. It was camping and sports and ballroom dancing. It was learning to give of oneself in a tangible, physical way because other’s needs were such a part of everyday life. It wasn’t someone on the news. It was us and our friends dying, and their loved ones and hurting and struggling in their family lives. It was a calling to a higher purpose. All of it, all of community with its hurts and shortcomings and difficulties and challenges, is, an act of love. It is, like marriage and family, what we are called to do.
Community is something that you do. Something that you carry, something you are. It is receiving and giving. Without pride. And with selflessness.
My community is who I am. I am a piece of it. We function together as a little cluster of cells in the Body of Christ. That is why community matters.
Next on this mini-series: how to get your own.