Digging Into Community II

We all long for a space to belong, a place to be known and to know others, a place that feels like home should feel.    I remember from my teen years, wishing for someone to see me and know me as I was, not the masks that I projected. Even in a group, I felt very much like the stranger standing on the porch, looking in the window.   I longed to be with those gathered around the fireplace enjoying the warmth of connection. At the same time, the thought of inviting others into my space frightened me. What if they didn’t like me? What if what they saw frightened them or drove them to hate me?  So, I built my walls. I built them high. I built them thick to keep myself hidden and safe.    

God gave us those desires to be known.  He created us for inclusion into His fellowship, for deep connection with Himself and with others.    Though we hide ourselves away, wearing masks and constructing walls, the longings will not subside. We may suppress them for a time, but in those quiet moments, in the stillness of the night, they reappear.  The truth is, we need each other, not just so we can feel warm and fuzzy, but so we can become the people God created us to be.  

In community, we encounter Christ in a way that no individual ever can (Mt 18:20).  In community, God reshapes us to the image of Christ as we live out the “one-anothers” of Scripture.  In community, we grow into the fullness of Christ and into His joy (Eph 4; Jn 17:11,13). We cannot do any of those alone with just our Bibles.  We need each other. We need authentic, committed relationships. We need community.  

  • Spend some time reflecting on Ephians 4:1-16.  
  • What is being described here?  
  • How does it sound?  
  • Talk with God about how you are responding to all of this (Your thoughts, feelings and desires)       

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