We are a people a community of more than two people, for it is not good for mankind to be ‘alone’ was one of the early words of conversations between the community of heaven. Why was this not good? as the alone does not represent God, God is never singular, never just one always in a community, a covenant of relationships, an expiration in more than one. Mankind is to be a demonstration of this movement of God, this Divine Dance, it is not good to be ‘alone’.
Our community, the body is the joining of two or more people who have been intentional (Intentional is an important word for the Christ follower, a practical disposition being intentional, being intentional in our Christ likeness, life style and work), these who have agreed to cultivate their action around the ways of Jesus and intentionally love one another—caring, growing, and serving. All are equal participants; everyone seeks to grow; everyone builds in the lives of the others; everyone understands that the ultimate purpose of the community is to display God and bring its implication to influence our larger world.
“Simple people can be amazingly powerful when they are members one of another. As everyone knows, it is almost impossible to create a fire with one log, even if it is a sound one, while several poor logs may make an excellent fire if they stay together as they burn.”
A life together, this covenant life of community and UNION has several expressions that demonstrates a life of God Movement;
The natural one and first one that comes to mind is a covenant, a community a demonstration of heavens way in marriage, the union of “…these two shall become one…” is an intensive experience. Life close up, working being intentional to know each other, the depths of feeling and emotions. Nothing kept from each other, we trust, the marriage journey is often about finding the words to express my inner being to another, experiences and emotions to make known to your spouse whats going on inside. No secrets, pushing each other for growth, taking with intent such experiences as cooperating, love, grace, generosity, thankfulness. Unfortunately the catalogue of where I miss it is quite full, but there are times when we get it right. This experience of UNION of community has done more to change me, I know it saved me as well.
Being part of a community of people who will sit together, eat together, build each other, correct each other, believe for each other, speak of joys, goals, misses and sadness, lives intricacy woven into each other. This has been my experience, a rich covenant with men and women, who have journey together. No one there for their own agenda but willing to sow everything they have for a mutual community advance. We laugh a lot together we cried together, more than that we broke things open together and for one another, as well as we saw God together. This is no less an intentional covenant life style.
There have been men, men who have been very close over the last 35 years that have been given to serving Christ to see the agenda of God in Restoration who have also committed to each other. With these we spent hours together, talking personal stuff, debated what we read, provoked each other in what God was saying, scenario‘-ed’ the future, travelled together as we gave ourselves from our own personal agendas and what we had to do to be with the other person so we could spend time together, dug gardens together, repaired cars, painted rooms, mover furniture, but the centre was an outworking of God relationship.
The People I belong to, the church – ekklesia offer another opportunity for a broad experience of community. We met in large rooms sining and listening to teaching, i cant say we discover the place of transparency in the corporate setting. But there is something we must and cannot loose the intentionality of ‘gathering’, sharing hugs, exchanging words, knowing that this community is there for us and us for them if the circumstance necessitate it. Its being INTENTIONAL in gathering rather than just seeing what happens , but INTENTIONAL in being corporate with people of great difference, learning to love God and express God in that one way
I am challenged when I come across people who have committed to live very practically in commitment, not to withdraw for a people a society but to be live in the midst of it. I wonder if you or I could live like that? Various degrees of common pot, may be not, but what about sharing house, what ever it is it could be to purchase a village together over time so we all live to demonstrate to a broken world a whole life style. Not sure if I could do that but it is covenantal and mankind not being alone. Living close building a demonstration of care, involved lives
We have over the years strived to be open and inclusive to many, opening our lives and home up, using our dinning table as a tool to express life together. Having groups of people around us, pouring life out and receiving life from all who are together. Our goal was to press into them the things we believed Jesus has taught us over these many years as well as helping them to discover this and more for themselves. We have taken special delight in these people and consider them to be sons and daughters in the faith.
Become convinced that the word community, like marriage, ought to be reserved for collections of people who make their relationship a very sacred trust.
Community is at the core of the genuine Christian life.
It is not an optional experience but is essential
It is actually indispensable
God has many things to reveal to us that could not or would not happen if one stuck to a solo experience of faith.
There are two African proverbs I love to consider, one Desmond Tutu used often Ubuntu a definition of “human-ness”, and is often translated as “humanity towards others,”, I am as we are… Then there is an old African proverb which challenges my thinking. “Alone, I have seen many marvellous things, none of which are true.” Truth—God’s voice—is best recognised and affirmed in community.
It is together that we learn what it means to be community, to be a Relational Movement, to reflect God and be God’s family.