Includes people into our world who aren’t like us
weren’t raised like us
and don’t think like we do.
and make us a little uncomfortable.
Community enlarges the territory of our lives
and our faith
It faithfully surrounds our lives with a safety net of those who do life with us, accepting us exactly as we are but love us too much to let us remain where we are.
And when our lives aren’t ready or open to this, isolation becomes our default alternative.
But there is untold dangers in a life lived out in isolation.
Without community, the storms come and we are destroyed
Within it, the storms come; we are shaken, but in the end are saved and strengthened.
A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. Ecclesiastes 4:12
In my own life I’ve come to a place in which I’ve realized that it’s all too easy and comfortable to end up left to ourselves; believing and thinking the same ways I’d always thought. But Jesus longs to enlarge my life; our lives. And when we relinquish the selfish grip we hold on our lives, we find ourselves placed lovingly within community with others. Just for the purpose of accomplishing the originally intended work in us; and in those with whom our hearts have become knitted together.
Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. For you will spread out to the right and to the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities. Isaiah 54:2-3
I believe we will find that there is untold beauty to woven within the imperfect, awkward, messy strands of community.
Just as I am, may you find yourself there.