God saw it right from the beginning. Having created an amazingly interconnected world and fashioned the first human being in his image to cultivate his creation, he said, ‘it is not good for man to be alone, I will make a helper – a companion – for him.’ From that point community was woven right into the fabric of humanity, mirroring the life of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
But the threads have begun to loosen and the garment of society has begun to fray today, sagging under the tension of modern living. So often many of us feel alone and as a people we are discovering it is not good.
Even our church life is not untouched by these developments. In the busyness of programmes, we lose sight of people. In the business of keeping the show on the road, we find less and less time to travel together as companions on the way. Our prayers for one another grow shallow when we don’t take and make time to share life together. We find ourselves asking, ‘who really cares?’
As a people who have become turned in on ourselves, can we hear God’s voice afresh calling us out of our isolation to be one anothers? The community of God’s people. Connected in Christ. Companions in the life of faith. Created to cultivate togetherness in his world.
It all sounds great, but it isn’t easy. It will be costly and counter cultural to rediscover this kind of church life together again. But the value of it is priceless. The vision it offers of life as God always intended is a foundation of what it means to be present for mission in today's lonely world.
BUILDING THE COMMUNITY OF THE CHURCH
From Tuesday 28 April to Friday 1 May 2020, a variety of events will help leaders and members of congregations explore different aspects of building the community of the church. There is something here for everyone. A day conference, two midweek evening events and two mornings, all offering ways into this crucial conversation with the promise of some practical steps we can take to express the kind of community the church is meant to be and that the world is crying out for. Our guest speaker is Dr Ed Welch, a prolific and practical author on this area of church life.
It's not good to be alone. Never was. Never will be. We don't have to be. Shouldn’t need to be. God has a better plan for our lives and it flows from him, through his people, to pull together again this fractured, lonely world.
Watch the promo clip, find further details about each of the events and book tickets here.
Rev David Thompson is the Secretary for the Council for Congregational Life & Witness.