My community of people who are unlike myself.
I’ve been leading a small community of spiritual seekers the last year. My wife and I are the only Christ-commited followers in this incredibly diverse group. Black, white, european, asian, ex-catholic, hindu, new-age, atheist color the community. Yvz and I look forward to this gathering every single month.
It’s collectively evolved into what we all call a ‘spiritual circle’ framed around faith, love, and hope. Some of you might thing these are the elements of a ‘Mosaic’ community, or the Thessalonian church in scriptures, but it’s really the heart of every human being.
Faith, With all the different backgrounds, cultures, and traditions, there’s an underlying conviction that there’s more to life. That there is a reality beyond what we perceive day to day. Something greater, if we took the time to reflect as a community, that we just might tune in and discover.
Love, is at the very core when everything else is stripped away. This idea of community, relationships amid diversity. There’s something about hearing one another out that validates our humanity. We share food, lives, stories, and of course good times.
Hope, in that we each time we gather we are not only challenged and inspired mentally, but that it pours out it to our day to day lives. We take what we discover about ourselves, one another, humanity, the Creator, and share it with others and allow it to ripple through our individual communities, believing that we can contribute to humanity in the process.
Last night was no different. There is a sense of calling in this group of people who would not naturally relate to one another for any other reason. The person who led last night’s discussion has literally six-degrees of seperation from me. To be honest, this group is more committed than many Christian communities I have been a part of. I love these people and value who they are and the richness they add to my life.
Third missional value: The mission is motivated by love
Every human being no matter far from God is invaluable to God. There is no mission without love for people – not as targets as often is the case, but as precious people made in the image of God. Jesus did not see the last, the lost, and the least, as charity cases, but as authentic people that he related to with compassion. The mission is deepest and widest, when God’s redeemed, love people as genuine human beings.
Unlike in the past where it has often been that one must first believe the right doctrines, then subsequently become the right person, and then finally were finally permitted to join the inner circle of community, Jesus demonstrated the reverse. Jesus’ mission was motivated by love as demonstrated by his radical inclusiveness. His mission invites people to belonging in community and engages them to becoming the people they were each intended to be. As God’s undeniable love presses against the hearts of people, the hope is that they might find themselves passionately believing and embracing the love of God. Love lies at the heart of the mission.