Hope you had a great weekend. I read a great book recently called “Villages without walls” by kiwi Nigel Dixon. This really challenged me to think about what community means to me.unnamed

He shares research from some psychologists in 1974 which suggests that “community” is made up of 4 elements:

  1. Membership (a sense of belonging)
  2. Influence (which bi-directional)
  3. Fulfillment of needs (giving & serving each other)
  4. Shared emotional connection (spiritual bond)

For anyone interested in this topic I would encourage you to get hold of a copy of this book.

So what does this mean for you and I? Do we currently have a community of faith that we belong to? Perhaps multiple communities? Are our needs being met? Are we meeting others needs?

There are some key scripture that provide some guidance around what it can look like to be in community, and specifically a community of faith:

“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Hebrews 10:24-25

“Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” Acts 2:46-47

There are also those scriptures which could really test and challenge us: (I’m sure there are some great theologians reading this who may have differing views on this scripture, but personally I am challenged by it!)

“All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had.” Acts 4:32