Why Community?

Last week a group of my friends took it upon themselves to "love bomb" me.  I had {still am somewhat} been struggling with stress, resulting in chest pains and shortness of breath.  I went to the doctor and everything, having blood drawn for testing and all that fun stuff.  My physical went great but my blood work isn't back yet.

The point is my awesome community.  They saw a need and took it upon themselves to love me especially fiercely last week.  My constant thought last week was "I am so messy right now, I can't even believe that anyone would want anything to do with me".  That's the Jesus in community. 

I tend to get messy with emotion.  Especially when waiting for justice is involved.  When I see people hurting and justice taking it's time, it is especially hard for me to deal.  I, like most humans, want action now, for the pain to stop and the healing to come.

But that's not usually how it works.

There is a remedy in the meantime however.  And that healing salve sent from God is community.

Think about Jesus a little, what we know about His life and how He spent His time.  The only times I can recall him being alone was when He went off to pray {I think it is especially important to note that He did not make this a show!}.  The other times?  You can find Him in community with others, eating, talking, being with the people.  He did not make a show of his relationship with God, setting Himself apart from others because of His position.

No, He got right in there with the messy people.  He got their emotions all over Himself.  He loved the people who were hurting and their lives were changed because of it.

He didn't wait until Bible study to associate with people. Sunday mornings were not the time to be together.  He got in there and did life with them.

I'd like to think that if alive today Jesus would be the guy you could count on to coach the soccer team, pick up your kids from school, go to that appointment with you, bring you dinner when you need it, leave a note on your door to encourage you, sit by your dying grandma's bedside.  He would go door to door to help those who needed it.

And you know what.  Never would community become more important than God, because God IS community.  Just like the apple can't become more important than the tree, God is permanently above community because it is part of the fabric of His being.  You NEED community to get closer to God.  You NEED to get peoples emotions and mess all over you to know what it means to serve them.  

Because Jesus himself did not separate community from loving God, lives were changed.  That is "why community?".  Because Jesus did not set up a spirituality scale and say "you must do this to be "good enough" and instead flung the doors open, that is "why community?".

We were not created to be alone.  If you want to begin to develop a deep community around you, step outside of the parameters of Sunday morning and Bible study time.  Don't forget about those faces for the rest of the week.  Instead follow those little heart prompts and love on the people in your path.

I'll end with this:

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.  Hebrews 10:24-25

How else is this possible to accomplish if not with community?

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