In Acts 2:42-47, we encounter a description of how the very first Jesus followers organized themselves to fulfill God’s mission of renewing all things. In these verses, we discover that these believers had everything in common – Common Life. Common Worship. Common Good – but most importantly there was one “uncommon” dynamic to their life together – Uncommon Power from the Holy Spirit.
I have been dwelling upon these verses as we “re-centralize” City Hope around these values in the coming months and get back to the original vision of people living in authentic Christian community for the common good.
So, here’s a few thoughts about what each of these dynamics will look like:
Common Life: Acts 2:44-45, 46b
– Weekly, mid-week gatherings for intentional discipleship, leadership, community, and vocation discovery/deployment
– Follow a rhythm of Up.In.Out.Forward
– Goal of multiplying to 2 or 3 groups in 2015.
Common Worship: Acts 2:42, 46a
– Bi-weekly Sunday worship gathering at the Lile’s (and eventually our new space) with a simple order that incorporates Worship, Word, and Witness
Common Good: Acts 2:47
– Community meals for new relationships
– Serve at The Landing Food Pantry – serving 50+ families every Friday
– Plan for a weekly Kids Club gathering – after school tutoring, mentoring and life lesson
– Raise awareness and support around issues of justice/injustice (ex. IJM; Child Sponsorship; Simple Living)
– Hold Community forums around issues of education, racial reconciliation, and vocation
Uncommon Power: Acts 2:43, 47b
– This is the part where we trust God to show up in powerful and surprising ways as we meet regularly to seek Him to be transformed in the image of His Son Jesus.
In fact, I’ve been thinking a lot about how the first two are our response and responsibility. We respond to God in worship (Common worship). We are responsible to live our Christian life in the context of community and love for one another (Common Life). But then, the other two are God’s response and responsibility. He causes the expansion of His Kingdom (Common Good). He sends the Holy Spirit in abundance to empower us to live out his calling upon our lives (Uncommon Power).
One thing we’re excited about is the possibility of acquiring some space that will allow us to more fully live out this vision. I am intrigued by a “theology of place” and how significant location is to the story of God. I think it is time that we pursue a home for the City Hope family to live out the dynamics described above…and to wait for uncommon things to happen too. More to come soon on this…
How about you? How are these dynamics at work in your own personal life? Are you lacking in any particular area? What’s God saying to you about that?
And if this all resonates with you, we’d love to have you join us on a Tuesday evening or Sunday morning or perhaps some other time.
Anticipating uncommon power in the midst of my common life,
* The image was originally a picture I took of our street that is being re-finished. I thought it was very timely that we are getting a new road at the same time that God is calling us to open up our home and lives in new ways.