Building Community

I can hardly believe that it has been a year since I first moved to Warrenton! This time last year I was getting to learn all sorts of new names of roads, and people! I was also starting to read through the 40 Days of Community planning materials.

We spent 6 weeks last fall in prayer and Bible study learning more about building community. I know there are some new friendships that have come from that experience. Ultimately it does take more than just 40 days to really form community…but what does it take?

One fellow blogger has started a list.

Some things are simple, like “shop local.” Before living in Warrenton I don’t think I’d ever run into anyone I knew at the grocery store, but now I’m practically guaranteed to see someone I know! I enjoy the chance encounters and see how it helps folks connect on another level.

What else does it take to build community? I’m a big fan of, “make extra and share.

I would add to the list, “laugh together, serve together, and eat together.” One of the best experiences of community that I’ve had was playing bridge and having dinner with the same group of friends every Thursday night for my first year of seminary. Over the course of three hours we would laugh and de-stress from our week – while being able to share the stories of our lives. Now, we’re spread throughout the world – one friend serving as an Army chaplain stationed somewhere in Iraq, another friend finishing a doctorate in North Carolina, and finally, one friend living and working in New York. Even though It has been some time since we were all together in the same place we’re still there for one another by phone/email. It isn’t quite the same. I imagine it the reason why God knew that to have the right relationship between people and God it would take a visit in person. Communication through Scripture and Tradition wasn’t enough anymore.

We see in scripture the way early Christians built community (Check out Acts 2:44-47 where they sell all their goods and hold all things in common!!).

What does it take to build community in our world today? What do we need to add to the list?


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