“Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.” Gal. 6:2
It is interesting that Jesus trained his disciples to think of themselves as a community, not as individuals trying to relate to their private God. I’ve heard it said that Community is a place:
1. To know and be known
2. To love and be loved
3. To serve and to be served
4. To celebrate and be celebrated.
That is a great picture of the way church is supposed to be. It is not a one-way street. It is giving and being given to. It is being part of something larger than yourself.
When we have had deaths in the family, or a new baby, it is our church family who reached out to us. I have tried to reach out to those in my relationship circle when they have had large life events going on. When you live in a big city, I think it is imperative to make long-term connections with others. I have done that at the Vineyard.
At times, the church or our small group can be an Oasis for others where they can get some rest. Sometimes the church is a hospital where people process forgiveness and healing. Sometimes it is a school where we learn spiritual truths. Sometimes it is an army where we use our spiritual gifts.
Occasionally, I see people who only want to be served, or who only want to serve others. I don’t think that is healthy long term. (I do realize there are seasons in life, but life really is better in a “village.”)
A small group or a church, where people use their gifts and serve one another, can do major things together.
I’m so glad for a place to know and be known and to serve and be served.