Genesis 1 makes it clear: God made humans to thrive in community, people created in the image of the triune God, for a relationship with the Triune God, and as male and female, for a relationship with one another. A simple gander at Genesis 3 shows how all of that imploded as Adam and Even committed high treason against the God of grace. But what remained indelibly etched on the human heart was the blueprint for sinless, God-honoring community.
Even in writing this I’ve seen enough of the day’s news to have ample evidence of fractured relationships at every level of society—nationally, racially, politically, vocationally, and in the family. The poison of the garden’s sin has spread through the veins of human history, wreaking it necrotic effects on communities everywhere. And this is why the church is such a unique institution, a bulwark against and a repair shop for societal relationship decay.
The church functions this way because God has made the church to be the singular human institution where honesty, love, and transformation can thrive through the gospel of Jesus Christ. The church is a place of honesty because everyone a part of a church admits they fall short of God’s righteousness, that they daily sin in thought, word, and deed. The church is a place of love because everyone who is part of a church has received the forgiving love of God through the sacrifice of Jesus. Being loved by God makes church folks love others, sometimes to their surprise. The church is a place of transformation because the Holy Spirit fills church members, setting about and finally accomplishing the renovation of the individual into the image of Jesus.
So, if you want to love someone well, your aim should be to get them into a solid church, which is also, hopefully, your church. You want this because you see the same relational blueprint in your friend as you do in yourself. All people are empty and hollow until they find forgiveness and a restored relationship with God, enabling them also to have restored, gospel based relationships with others. The best way to love someone is to invite them to church.
- Potluck - Our next potluck is on Sept 18th. Don't miss this opportunity to deepen relationships around a shared meal.
- New Members - Our next new members class will be during the month of October. Talk to me to sign up.
- Pregnancy Center Banquet - The fall banquet for the Culpeper Pregnancy Center will be on October 22. Christ Covenant families are hosting tables and would love to have you join them. Let me know if you're interested in attending.