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Understanding Jesus better through community with others

Posted by on Oct 12, 2012 in blog links | 2 comments

Understanding Jesus better through community with others

Joshua at “In Search of the City” has published a great post called “How my journey out of institutional Christianity first began.” It’s a personal piece filled with stories and insights from his own life, but it may be helpful to others who are just beginning (or even wondering about), in the middle of, or beyond this same kind of journey.

While I can relate to many of Joshua’s experiences, one in particular caught my attention. Why? Because he talks about learning about Jesus Christ through community with others. In the same way, as I began to understand “the church” as my brothers and sisters in Christ and not a building or system or organization, I also began to know Jesus more.

At one point, Joshua writes:

[M]y life became closely knit with a small group of brothers and sisters from all parts of the country and all different walks of life. For the better part of three years we ate together, worked together, played together, and studied together. And in the midst of it all, we pursued the Lord. We fellowshipped and we shared the mutual discoveries we each were making along the way. It was in this context that I began to catch a glimpse of the Lord Jesus Christ that was bigger and better than any small view I’d ever had of Him before. In addition, I began to see the church. Not an “it,” but a she. I saw her passionate, loving, drawn from His side. Not a place, but a people! Relentless in their pursuit of Him.

There is something special about sharing life with one another as we share our common life with Christ. As Joshua recounts, he later recognized this same kind of fellowship in the pages of the New Testament – in passages that often seemed foreign to him before.

Paul wrote in Ephesians that believers are God’s treasure and inheritance. I think if we understood how truly valuable we are to God, we would begin to understand how important and valuable we are to one another. In community with one another in Christ we grow and build one another up in maturity and love… knowing Jesus more.


2 Comments

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  1. 10-13-2012

    what a great post from Josh – thanks for referring it.

    One thing I constantly think when I read your posts like this… is that I wish my experience were more organized. :)

    “[M]y life became closely knit with a small group of brothers and sisters from all parts of the country and all different walks of life. For the better part of three years we ate together, worked together, played together, and studied together. ”

    God has proven Himself sufficient to provide relationships and Church for us ever since we walked away from business church. But I can’t really say there’s “one group that we live & walk with together” that is our church. we have people we meet with every week – but only once a week so I wouldn’t say we “live with each other”. it works out in such a way we really only can get together once a week (for now). we have other families God has brought into our life to experience community/ life but they don’t necessarily have the same vision for our community or focus that we do (Jesus). We have our own individual friends (me with my lady friends) that we share life with on a weekly basis & encourage each other in the Lord.

    Somewhere in all that – is our Church. all put together it really is one. though they might not even all know they are our church.

    I wish I could put more order to it. That’s a benefit of business church. You can label clearly who is part of your church. the easiest way is because your tithe goes there & you all have the same leader.

    It would be nice – for me who loves organization (and control) to be able to say – okay these 3 or 5 families – we are going to stay together for 3 years – everybody let’s live life together to grow together as a Church…… let’s focus on learning to love & experiencing Jesus through community together….. but it hasn’t worked like that for me. It’s very un-dramatic & noticeable most weeks.

    and every time I grasp for more control/order I am constantly sensing a “let go” message from the Lord rather than “do more” message in any form.

    rambling…..
    thoughts? :)

  2. 10-15-2012

    Randi,

    “I wish I could put more order to it.” You sound like me… :)

    I always want to put things together the way that I want them or the way that I’ve seen or heard about elsewhere.

    -Alan