All are welcome to join us though the next two months to explore some of the very basics of community life. Using two books to help us identify critical themes: Community 101: Reclaiming the Local Church as a Community of Oneness, (Gilbert Bilezikian, Zondervan, 1997) and the Dietrich Bonhoeffer classic Life in Community, we’ll rediscover the importance of personal relationships with God and others, and what makes an effective, growing, faithful church. Check us out for these discussions:
July 10: Community Before the Beginning
There is a reason to search for and work hard for community. Why? Because it is the very nature of God. God’s self is a community of oneness we know as the Trinity. Without community (or being in communion with one another), we do not reflect God’s nature. What’s more, we cannot effectively worship God or give God glory without it. But oh how God loves it when we are in community! Is fighting for “community” in our marriages, families, workplaces and yes, our churches…even Wesley Church…and perhaps even nation hard? You betcha. Is it worth it? Well, I guess that’s for you to decide.
July 17: The Gift of Community
Did you know we are a gift to each other? It’s true. We were created in God’s likeness, and that likeness does not like to be alone. Nobody likes being alone. So God created, out of Adam’s very likeness, an almost mirror image (not exactly the same), called woman, without whom community could not be
birthed. People – all of us – were created for each other, that God’s likeness and nature would always be apparent. We are gifts to each other! Given that fact, perhaps it’s a little harder to reject one another! Not only that, but God’s gift of Himself was given in the person and work of Jesus Christ. The greater truth is that God gave himself as a gift to all of us. Not only can we be in communion with each other if we choose, we can be in communion with God through Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit!
July 24: Community: How Good It Is!
The benefits of community…
July 31: When Community is Broken
“Whenever oneness occurs,…, it swiftly comes under attack from savage anti-community forces loose in the world.” (Bilezikian, page 46) The Fall has made it difficult for us to create and maintain community. That’s why we pray, “Your kingdom come…” The core of this Sunday’s message will center around the two aspects of the cross – vertical (personal salvation; love God) and horizontal (love of neighbor). In other words, there is no cross without both aspects.
More on these Sundays in a few weeks:
August 7 – Confession, Communion and Community
August 14 - The Responsibility to Community
August 21 – Community in Ministry
August 28 – Community after the End