In my experience, truth filled, merciful, and no fences community is an extremely rare form of human relationship. I realize that most of our, my focus is on separate one to one relationships. Spouse, kids, and close friends are very important to me. The challenges of being close are so great, that I usually do not think or expect more. Every aspect of each relationship demands my attention and energies. Engaged communication with the intent of learning takes time and commitment. Walking with a desire to be part of his or her steps, to share the load, and be a part of the solution requires intentional discipline. Even the act of being present, fully and completely in any given moment, is one that consumes soul energy. Before I pay full attention to those close to me, I have run out of whatever is inside. It is hard to consider looking beyond to whatever community is.
Even when I muster the energy, courage, and curiosity, I find myself turning away from community. Reality suggests that communities that give more than they consume are exceptional. Evil goes on to whisper in my ear that selfless communities do not really exist, they are myths that only live within our imaginations. In fact, Evil tells me that groups of individual only come together because of individual member's personal gains. It is easy to believe.
Yet the witness and experience I have had with special communities has left me with first hand evidence to the contrary. In times of stress and aloneness, I find the memories lifting and nurturing my soul. I hear stories of others, that “the whole congregation of believers was united as one-one heart, one mind! They didn't even claim ownership of their own possessions. No one said, 'That's mine; you can't have it.' They shared everything.” (Acts 4.32) I know they are true because that is what others have given me in community.
Today, I can give this to my communities. My prayer is that others find in my community what God's kids have given in others.
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