As a church for all people, our vision is to engage our city with the gospel of Jesus Christ that transforms lives, creates community, promotes justice, and renews culture both locally and globally.
If the Gospel of Jesus Christ creates community, how can we engage this practically?
First, we can recognize our human longing for community. We find community in and around so many things. Even when we find ourselves sitting in a room with ten other people, and all of us are on our phones, we can see that in one way or another we are driven to connect. We don’t want to be left out.
Second, look at what God has done in the Gospel. Christianity offers community that is stronger and more enduring than community that is built around education, geography, ethnic background, family, or interests because it finds its origin in the eternal community of the being of God. God sent his Son into the world, to manifest the community of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in human community. The Holy Spirit continues to mediate God’s presence to us.
To be a Christian is to be a person who has, because of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, entered this community. And that means that we have the opportunity to enter into community with other Christians. In fact, all the fellowship we experience as believers is an extension of the fellowship between the Father and the Son, as John notes in 1 John 1:3. Additionally, all our fellowship is a dramatization of the fellowship between the Father and the Son. In other words, the Holy Spirit is working in our relationships so that our Christian fellowship is a reflection and a display of the fellowship within the Trinity. Every time you get together with your community group you are acting out a human representation of the being and love of God.
To be on Christian mission, either locally or globally, is to look for ways to extend that fellowship and love to other people. This might happen by inviting someone into your community group, because of what Jesus has done for them. This might look like you, as someone who enjoys the fellowship of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, entering another community, like a group of refugee families who have just moved into the area.
Remember that when you enter any community, whether that is a business community, or a group of soccer moms, or a support group for people who are fighting cancer, don’t get paralyzed thinking about strategy. I believe God’s main strategy is found in the promise, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” God is with us, because he has made a way for us to enter into fellowship with him.
Because of Jesus, the fellowship of the Father, Son, and Spirit go with you into every room and community you enter. Let’s engage our city, and trust God to create community.