i am continuing my read on life together, by dietrich bonhoeffer.
i recommend this book.
He spoke in ways that would humble the slightest visionary when it comes to the ideas of community, or even the faith.
Bonhoeffer says that christian community is alot like christian sanctification… a gift of God that we cannot claim, meaning, God initiates, sets it in motion and we have no claim to it… it’s a gift.
One thing i have noticed about myself is that when i see things that i dont agree with in my church or others, i will complain about the way it was done, and express how i would have done it. (sarah gets to carry this load most of the time, i should buy her flowers.) i’m going to quote a section from the book that tore me to shreds.
“If we do not give thanks daily for the christian fellowship in which we have been placed, even where there is no great experience, no discoverable riches, but much weakness, small faith and difficulty; if on the contrary, we only keep complaining to God that everything is so paltry and petty, so far from what we expected, then we hinder God from letting our fellowship grow according to the measure and riches which are there for us all in jesus christ.”
Here, another statement on the perspective of community…
“Because God has already laid the only foundation of our fellowship, because God has bound us together in one body with other christians in Jesus Christ, long before we entered into common life with them, we enter into that common life not as demanders but as thankful recipients.”
it’s hard to follow up with either of these quotes from the book because they are both so rich and so plain in application when we look at living in a life of community. God calls us to be humble. The leader with the greatest vision had better hope that his vision is from the one that created him, and not a man made version of his own agenda for glory. God will humble. and in a community setting, if a man or woman step up to lead, his or her leading will be judged. I believe that the greatest leader will be the most humble. not the one that shouts the loudest and makes the most outragest comments.
anyone that enters into a community, i believe, would be foolish not to do so humbly and thankfully. Its a great gift that is given to us, this family of likeminded people that we serve with, disagree with, get angry with, need, walk with, forgive and love. We should be thankful that we dont have to bear our burdens alone.
just some more thoughts on community as i read through this book.