Community 3.1

Today’s post is the second in a series about the spiritual discipline of community.  To read the first post in the series click here.

Show And Tell

When both of my kids were in preschool they had a favorite day of the week.  Though three years apart, on an almost daily basis both would ask me “Is today Show and Tell?”  Show and Tell was their favorite because on the assigned day, they would carefully select an item to share with their class. Depending on the day, their school bag would include anything from a photo album to a favorite toy to a well-loved book.  At the age of four, my daughter would sometimes take a unicorn or a baby doll or a princess book.  At the same age, my son’s bag would hold items such as a dump truck, a transformer or a spy glass.

Some of you reading this knew my kids at the age of four.  However, many of you didn’t.  However, based off the short list of items I just shared, you have an image in your mind of what Kati Ann and Kie enjoyed at the age of four.  You can presume a knowledge of what they were like and what they might have been interested in.  Show and Tell was an outlet to express the unique qualities of their personalities and interests.

What if Jesus had a Show and Tell?  What would He take?  What would best represent His unique qualities, personality and interests to the world?  Jesus does have a Show and Tell.  It’s called the Church.

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The church, God’s community is the Show and Tell to the world. God’s plan is to show the lost world who He is, what He enjoys and cares about through His church.

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Few disciplines are as misunderstood as community.

Community.  The term conjures up warm fuzzies and images of campfire singing.  It’s peaceful and all is right with the world.  I think of community and I think harmony, folks in agreement and void of complaints.

And then I wake up to reality–the place where the rubber meets the road.  The discipline of community is that messy place where I love someone I’d rather ignore.  Community is including the people I think I don’t need and even secretly believe I’d be better without.

Community isn’t just drawing near to those who are easy to love.  The discipline comes when we choose to deny our flesh and let God’s Spirit love through us.  Community isn’t acting on emotions or personal preference.  Community is about being a show and tell of Jesus.

God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them. We’re speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he’s already a friend with you.———--1 Corinthians 5:20-21

Question: From your experience, is the Church a good show-and-tell of what Jesus is about & what He’s interested in?  Why or why not?

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To read more about spiritual disciplines and the how God uses them to make room in our lives for Him to move check out other posts under the category Room To Move.

3 comments found

  1. When disaster strikes, the love of Jesus takes over and Christians live out our calling to be the body of Christ. We witnessed this a few years back when our neighbors in Jarrell were hit by an F5 tornado. Texas Baptist showed up to prepare meals and Red Cross works delivered meals and to relieve workers. Christians seem to be best at living out our calling when times are difficult.

    However, when things are “normal,” we often fail to live as Christ. The old saying one bad apple spoils the bunch applies. The world may remember us by those times when we fail to act as Jesus would have acted. And, as you stated sometimes we are called to do things we would rather not do. And each one of us can become that bad apple from time to time, when we let our emotions and desires take control.

    We are flawed people, capable of show great love one day and selfish behavior the next. That is why it is important to be part of a community of believers and take time to connect with the Holy Spirit each day. Only then can we live out our calling of Christian love. After all, it is His love we are called to share.

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