Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it.” Genesis 1:28 NLT
Community was God’s plan from the beginning. He said it wasn’t good for man to live alone, so He created marriage, families, tribes, countries, and the church. You may be surprised to see the church in that list but it belongs. The church is the family of God. It is a gift to you where you can be connected in community.
The scriptures tell us, But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God John 1:12 NLT. If you are a Christ follower you are one of the family. The church is full of brothers and sisters with God as our Father.
Do you think it is significant that Jesus started the model prayer for His disciples in Matthew 6:9, OUR Father? You and I are created to live life in community. It is not always easy. In fact, it is more challenging, but that is God’s design. No one should be an island. Each of us is a part of the whole and we have mutual responsibilities to each other and to God. What you do or don’t do affects the Church and your community. The family of God suffers when you try to go it alone. By the way, have you ever noticed alone and lonely are very similar words?
Some community happens organically, naturally. You and another person nearly choose the same row at a gathering . You end up laughing about it with them and soon you are exchanging names and talking about life. That’s a start. You may find community in the cafe, playing basketball together, or meet at the play station in McDonalds. We make friends with the other parents on the sports teams on which our kids play. You might meet new friends in some serving activity. I love it when community happens naturally.
Let’s get intentional too. Get in a community group. Participate regularly in a ministry or outreach. There may not be a better way to experience the life of Christ than to stick with a serving team over time and experience both the work of God among you and the benefit of community between you.
If you find yourself struggling with your faith, who you gonna call? Do you have a 2 a.m. friend? If you’ve intentionally invested in community then you will have people who will weep when you weep and laugh when you laugh.
We all desire to know and be known, to love and be loved. This life of community will take intentional effort on your part. Whether you seek out a small group or participate in a men’s or women’s event, building relationships takes an investment of time and energy. Continue to pursue God together at Sunday gatherings. You might be able to worship God in nature, but the church family is best equipped when you participate regularly. You were made for community and the community is incomplete without you. When community functions like God intended, it is as close to heaven as we will get on earth.