We are Church Communities • West Campus
- In 1 Peter 2:4-12 we took a look at our Identity as a community of believers and God's purpose in separating a people to himself. Peter talks about how we are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, and a holy nation. He was writing to a group of people that came from various backgrounds. Some were new believers, and some were people who had a deep Jewish heritage. This was a group of people who were scattered all across Asia Minor and were exiles under intense opposition. He was affirming the reality that they belonged to a different Kingdom then the one they physically lived in. We at times feel the weight of that as well as we live in a world that is very different from the Kingdom of God that we belong to. We learned that although God might pursue us individually he doesn't pursue us for individualism and we belong to a much larger group of people recognized as the Church. This reality makes it impossible to participate in the Kingdom of God as an isolated individual. But, our tendency often times it to do just that.
- As a people that were created to share life with one another in declaration of God's glory why do we fight for isolation so much? What keeps us from embracing one another and sharing life with one another inside the body of Christ?
- Some of us live guarded lives and we aren't transparent with one another. We have a very individualistic approach to the Gospel so we keep a "safe" distance. In what ways have we allowed hurt, conflict, or betrayal affect the way we pursue gospel-centered community with one another?
- In what ways have expressed transparency but in a way that isn't honest? How have we put on a facade in our interactions with one another and inside the Church? In what ways have we been honest, but not vulnerable? What makes it so difficult for us to share our burdens with other people in a way that we are open to their help, care, and affection?
- Our union with Christ, unites us to His church. Jesus came to walk among us, and to lay down His life for us. But, He didn't lay down His life so that we could have casual interactions with broken people. He laid down His life to raise up a kingdom of priests and people who shared their lives with one another. This reality makes it impossible to say that you're growing closer to God but growing distant from His people. Because, to love God more is to love His people more. To trust God more is to vulnerably open up our lives to each other in a way that puts us out their to potentially be hurt by one another. Because of our union together with Christ we should be a people that are committed to one another.
- In what ways have we not been committed to participation in community? What keeps us from being committed to one another and the neighborhood that we live in? What hinders us from showing up, and then being vulnerable, and honest with one another?
- How have we attempted to fight the war against our flesh alone instead of pursuing holiness together in community? How has living guarded lives that aren't transparent and vulnerable with God's people hindered our growth in Christ?
- What are some of the ways we have put on display the glory and character of God missionally in our neighborhoods? In what ways are we declaring the gospel to the unbelieving that live around us? What would it look like for us a as a Community to begin living life on mission together?