23 Let us hold on to the confession of our hope without wavering, since he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us watch out for one another to provoke love and good works, 25 not neglecting to gather together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day approaching.
Some of my guilty pleasures in life are Hallmark Christmas Movies. Every year my wife (Heather) and I love to turn on the TV and watch these made-for-tv movies. The soundtrack of pizzicato strings and clarinet runs gives the Christmas season such a good and merry feel. But the one thing that is so common in many movies is that the setting of the film is a small mountain town where everyone knows each others name, they all go to church together, and they gather together for "big" town festivals and parades and celebrate the seasons and holidays. And there is something about these little idyllic snapshots that bring a sense of warmth during the holidays. I'd like to think that the formula behind these extremely mediocre movies is perfect: Create a world that revolves around and uplifts community and people will watch.
I believe that deep down we all desire to live in these types of communities. A place where everyone knows everyone's name. A place where the community celebrates together, mourns together, and supports one another. But the reality of life is that very few people live in this "Mayberry-esc" setting. Social Media, 24-hour news, and cell phones were designed to help people connect to the world around them easier and faster, but in reality, we couldn't feel further apart.
At Grassroots, we believe that Christianity is, by design, a communal faith. Therefore, we value living in community with one another and are committed to meeting together in and outside of a Sunday gathering.
Community can be hard, community can be painful, but community is beautiful, community is wonderful, and community perfects. There truly is no such thing as the perfect community. Human beings will always be human. And that means that human beings will always make mistakes and hurt one another. The great thing is that God chose human beings to be the bearers of hope, the bearers of love, and the bearers of compassion. When we engage in community we are granted the opportunity to be one of those bearers. We are granted the opportunity to show love, grace, and mercy to members of the Body of Christ.
I have a passion for what is known as the "Great Commission." Christ told his disciples as he left to "Go into all the world and make disciples of all nations." Andy Stanley (The leader of North Point Ministries in Atlanta, Georgia) once said, "The most powerful form of evangelism is a community of Christians who love each other." The truth of the matter is that we cannot do life on our own. We were created through community and for community.
Community gives us the opportunity to forgive, it gives us the opportunity to love, it gives us the opportunity to meet new and interesting people, and it gives us the opportunity to show the world around us the perfect love of Jesus Christ.
So we value to engage in community with one another in and outside of a Sunday gathering so that we may experience everything that God has intended for humanity.