Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Community begets Creation

Free Children in Sneakers At The Skate Park Creative Commons

photo credit: pink sherbet photography
Out of Us-ness, He creates...If God exists in community, we can not mirror Him unless we are also in community.
I've been mulling over these words from Sunday's sermon.  This thought is not one that I ever would have heard in our old churches.  Though, well-intentioned, our most recent church would never use the word "community" without a following "group," meaning a once every month or two social gathering.

Let's face it: community deeper than that is HARD.  Suddenly, you're opened up, not just to people you like, but to people of all stripes.  In a more traditional setting, people you would just smile politely at are now in every aspect of your life.

When I was smacked in the face with this truth, I desperately wanted to pull back, protect myself and my family.  I didn't want to admit that I may have been in the wrong and could learn from criticism.  I just wanted to shut down.  But...

So now, I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other.  Just as I have loved you, love each other.  Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.             John 13:34-35

Truth?  I'm not sure this was one of the times I drew comfort from the Bible.  I didn't WANT to love...at least not with these strings attached, not people who dare to find fault with me.  I do want to mirror Christ, though.  And our pastor was right (JMc, if you're reading, there was never a doubt!).  Without community--hard community--I won't be able to.  Because Jesus tells me, my love will prove to the world that I am His.

*I'm continuing to meditate on the first part of the quote: creation coming from community.  Look for a second post on this topic next week.

What do you think?  Has community been a hard or easy experience for you?  Good or bad? 

2 comments:

Jonathan McIntosh said...

Thanks for the shout out, Monica.

Some great thoughts here for sure. God is at work... and the healing pain of deep community you describe reminds me of Eustace Scrubb's layers of dragon-like skin being peeled off by Aslan's claws.

Painful. It exposes us... but in it is grace.

Thanks for the reminder.

significantencounters.com said...

I would rather be a hermit. Much easier. I am finding lately though, that this is not how I was created to be. This path is more difficult, this community, but obeying Him is of the utmost importance.
Glad I came across your blog.

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