Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Community on Mission

Compared to the amount of time and mental space I expend on the topics, I have blogged very little about: community, small groups, communal living, friendship, support, encouragement, hospitality, authenticity, & transparency. The only answer I have for this disconnect is that I find most of the time I have more questions than answers. I thought it might help us all to just start talking.

Where are you on the topic of community? Do you agree with the above byline: Journeying together with a common missional purpose? Does that describe community to you? Who is a part of your community? How does one find community? Are your 'community' needs being met?

How does community play out in a church of over 200 like New Hope? Do we need more structure or less? Is it the responsibility for the faith community to provide community or is it the responsibility of the individual to seek the community he or she needs to move forward in his/her journey?

I look forward to the conversation.

1 comment:

PRS & ALS said...

Community to me is of vital importance in my journey as a follower of Jesus. I'm not sure I agree with the idea that you must have a common missional purpose to be in community, but I do feel you must respect and support each other's purposes through conversation, prayer, etc.

An important aspect of community is being authentic with each other, being open, honest, vulnerable. I need a place to be myself and to drop the mask I so easily put on in public.

I don't think that the organized faith community is responsible to set up community because I think community a mysterious thing that we can't orchestrate. But I think that the faith community should create a climate in which people are free to be open and authentic. Also, in reality, many people need some nudges in order to move out of their comfort zones into adventures in community. For instance, people say, "Let's get together for dinner sometime", but sometime never happens. Why is that? What would it take for us to actually make that move? Are we afraid of rejection? Are we too busy with other things?

I have just found that usually when I make that move toward community and developing relationship with another person, my life is enriched beyond my expectations and hopefully the other person's is too.