In a world of division, separation, disunity and isolation, a spirit of togetherness is a beautiful and Godly thing. 1 Peter 3:8 “Finally, all of you should be of one mind. Sympathize with each other. Love each other as brothers and sisters. Be tenderhearted, and keep a humble attitude.”
One of the reasons I believe in the local church is that we can do more together than separate. It is our togetherness that determines our capacity. Church growth is not about getting more people from outside in. Instead, it is having those that are in the House, take on the responsibility to build a family community that is so healthy and so full of life, that it bears fruit and grows naturally.
I think there is this myth out there of finding the ‘right church’. It is this mythical place that we hope we will stumble upon that will love us and meet all of our needs. What if instead of hoping to discover it, we decided to build it? Genuine community is intentionally created, it can’t be achieved by a single pastor or a church program – it takes all of us.
So how do I go about building this family? It has to be a priority that finds its way out of the pages of the Bible and into the pages of our schedule. To get really practical, this means
• You come together for church events and meetings beyond a Sunday. Sunday to Sunday church makes it very hard to build long term family. I have found it takes one more event during the week too.
• You make time in your calendar for people outside your biological family (expand your definition of family)
• You value important moments in other people’s lives (birthdays, anniversaries, funerals)
• You intentionally always have someone you are building a new friendship with.
• You open up your home and your heart and eat food. Let your kitchen get messy!
Stop waiting to discover the perfect church and begin building the church family God has placed you in!