Some folks who encourage and equip the church in western Europe to actually be the church by going and being the family of God in the midst of the culture there use a great video from WalMart and Coca-Cola as an intro for conversation about how important being “family” really is.
I often wonder what might happen if we as the church here in America would focus more of our energy beyond the Sunday morning toward actually going and being the family of God with the people of our communities. I would suggest that there is certainly more and more of this happening, for which I am very grateful. But those who call themselves His church should consider this question:
If God thought enough of putting on skin and coming to dwell among us (His neighbors), so should we as His church.
Such is the mindset of cultivating daily into neighbors. And by neighbors, again, we don’t just mean on your street only. We simply mean anyone in the daily pathways of your life, especially if you consistently interact with them. May we grow in the mindset that Jesus might actually have intended for His church to be more defined by how we are united around the purpose of being family out in the midst of our culture rather than defined by how we are united around a good worship experience.
By the way – if I consider myself a follower of Jesus who takes seriously the teachings of Jesus, including the one about making disciples as I am going, but I don’t have any deep friendships outside of my Sunday church gathering circle, then maybe I need to ask myself if I really take seriously that “making disciples” stuff. Because, if I am not bringing the love of the near Jesus and the security of the family of God into the daily lives of those in my pathways, many of whom are stifled by loneliness and insecurity, then I don’t value family and “loving my neighbor” and “making disciples” quite as much as I think I do.
Here’s hoping that we will be compelled to go love first as we have been loved. And here’s hoping that we might be inspired by the joy that comes from being family together, as WalMart and Coca-Cola have picked up on. Maybe we should even drop off a WalMart gift card to a neighbor. Or share a coke and some conversation. Just a suggestion :)
Oh yeah – here’s that video from WalMart and Coca-Cola about the joy that comes from being family together: