We like to talk a lot. When I say “We,” I also mean “me.”
In the Church we talk a lot about fostering “Real Community” and creating space for people to live in authentic relationships with one another.
I wonder if we realize what that even means.
There is a lot of talk about friendships and living life together. I have to wonder if all of this talk is missing the mark. Are we leading people to yet another culturalized definition of something that God meant to be extremely Jesus-centric. It seems we’ve again figured out a way to make something so spiritual and so Jesus, all about us.
When Jesus began to put together His “small group” he called them to these words…
“Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” (Matt 4:19)
What Jesus didn’t say was, “Hey guys, why don’t you come over to my place and eat some food, and we’ll all sit in a circle and pray for my Father to protect us from everything that scares us.”
Jesus called them first to a mission. His mission. He told them if they walked the road of life with Him, he would show them how to fish for people.
If our “authentic community” isn’t focused on reaching people, on being on mission with Jesus, it’s missing the mark.
Small group leaders, if you aren’t leading your group to fish for people, then you aren’t a real Jesus community. You’re the Rotary Club or a support group.
We have to show them how to fish for people by example, pointing them to Jesus. I am pointing the bony finger at myself right now too. I have been guilty of fostering the Jesus support group atmosphere in a small group.
Authentic, Biblical, Jesus community is the overflow of being on mission with the group of people we serve and live with. I think we’ve spent a load of time reversing the order. We thought that if a group of people had real Jesus community, they would eventually be on mission.
What if the mission is the most important thing and if we start going on mission with a group of like-minded people, community will follow?