Community (or the Practice of Christ)

Eric and I had a long conversation last night about spiritual apathy and the need for authentic community. We both came to the conclusion that these two things are intertwined, in that our individual lives and journeys are strengthened by the level of community that we are a part of. On some level, the richness of our lives in spirit and in truth should always be done in the context of a community who is embodying the practice of Christ. It is interesting that in Genesis the first thing God calls bad is the fact that Adam is alone. Maybe Adam was never fully in the image of God until he was in relationship with others. And from this point he could experience God more fully. Modern Christianity has made the gospel into propositions that must be agreed to cognitively by individuals. But then are we making disciples or simply ‘believers’? Counter to this is Dallas Willard who states that any system that does not create disciples (in word and deed) of Christ should be abandoned. Therefore, we must constantly be engaged in the practice of Christ ( I am specifically thinking humility and servanthood above others) with others. This is not to say that we should abandon individual prayer, meditation, and reading of Scripture, but maybe it just means that we experience God’s presence best when we are living it together.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “Community (or the Practice of Christ)

  1. I completely agree, and I am happy to hear you say those things. The community or the church is vital for a christian to be a part of.

    I also liked that you used the word “authentic”. More often than not I tend to engage in very shallow conversations, mainly out of selfish laziness. This is not loving but so easy to do. Being “intentional” in conversations and in asking questions does take more effort, but leads to more intimate relationships. I know I appreciate someone taking the time to ask more than the hey-how-are-you-how-is-school-going questions.

    Anyway, all I meant to say was “I agree with you.” Keep it up.

  2. You are seriously about to be taken off of the rotation. More bloggin soon or I’m cutting you off.

  3. Good thoughts. You know… us Reformed folk tend to stress community pretty heavily (i.e. Covenant). I think one of the keys to community is structure. It helps to have a pastor as great as Mike who teaches you what to practice and models it, a Session that holds you accontable, and people in the church that form networks to keep track of where there are needs and assign people to fill them. Some people assume this automatically leads to something less organic and forced, but I would say leadership and structure are some of the most organic facets of Creation. Within the family we see leadership and delegation. And to use Paul’s analogy, the church keeps the foot from deciding to be an eye, or an ear from just being a belly-button collecting lint.

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