Devotional: Real Community
As believers, community looks different – eternal, deeper, more significant – than the world’s definition of community. Real community is a Gospel-centered group of people that form a local body and live by the power of the Word and Spirit. That means that as a spiritual community, we are not dependent on buildings or physical gatherings (even though we love them!), but our connection is spiritual.
In Romans 1:7-13, Paul is greeting the church in Rome; note, though, that he is not with them physically. There are spiritual things he wants to impart. Real community means that we are the Church wherever we go and in whatever we do. At times in history the church has met in large buildings like we do now, but oftentimes, especially at its onset, the Church met wherever they could given the cultural context. That’s because the Church is made up by and goes forth through individuals.
Questions for Meditation
- What is your definition of real community? How does that different from the worldly expectations of community?
- Why is the historical context of how the church has met important for us to understand now?
- What is the importance, both for us, and for others, of real community being marked by prayer?
- Who are the people God is calling you to pray for this week? How can you carry their burdens from a distance?
- Why is individual strength in each believer so important to the church?
- How can you continue to grow in your private and individual strength?
- How can God use your individual strength to bless the great body of Christ?