Christianity in the context of community

“Christianity is meant to sit in the context of community, for it’s in community that we draw the grace needed to do what God has called us to do and to become what God has called us to become.”- Banning Liebscher

“Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or a sister is a liar.  For whoever does not love their brother or sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.”- 1 John 4:20 (NIV)

As Banning Liebscher concludes Chapter 11 of Rooted, he underscores that isolation and independence run countercultural to Christianity.  Simply stated, Christianity fails to work in those two milieus.  Thus, Jesus repeatedly stressed the importance of our actions with other people.  For Christianity only works in the context of community.

Furthermore, Pastor Liebscher states, in order for God’s grace to flow in and through us, we must not only serve others, but submit to them.  Most noteworthy, the author adds, we express pride when we refuse to submit to others or think we can go it alone.  Also, our Western culture perceives neediness as a sign of weakness.

However, we must accept that we need one another.  Because God designed us that way.  In contrast, isolation is a killer.  Banning explains Satan’s role in the process:

“The Enemy will do everything he can to isolate you.  He either tries to get you so hurt and offended . . . or he tries to isolate you with shame over some issue in your life. . . . Nothing destroys the power of shame or offense like choosing to move toward community.”

Today’s question: How does your Christianity flourish in the context of community?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog:  “Called to make decisions in community”

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