I'm currently reading Gabe Lyon's The Next Christians: How a New Generation is Restoring the Faith. It's definitely worth reading but has fueled me with some questions and seriously challenges some of my long-held beliefs. At times, it has filled me with sadness, thinking that to be a "true" "effective" and " countercultural" is not something that a person like me can do.... and it bothers me, but there is much in this book I agree with and enjoy.
On page 162 in his chapter titled In Community, Not Alone, he quotes N.T. Wright describing vibrant church community:
"It's a place of welcome and laughter, of healing and hope, of friends and family and justice and new life. It's where the homeless drop in for a bowl of soup and the elderly stop by for a chat. It's where one group is working to help drug addicts and another is campaigning for global justice. It's where you'll find people learning to pray, coming to Faith, struggling with temptations, finding new purpose, and getting in touch with a new power to carry that purpose out. It's where people bring their own small Faith and discover, in getting together with others to worship the one true God, that the whole becomes greater than the sum of its parts."
I'm a cynic, and I seriously wonder if this is even possible? If I'm up for it and if it could ever be a reality in my life.
How about you? Do you experience this type of community in your church? Do you want to? What holds you back?