Last weekend. we were on our young adult weekend away. We were in bog county- otherwise known as Co. Meath. Although, aren’t most counties other than Dublin ‘bog counties’? I’ll allow for your own interpretation on that!
Our very own Wendy and Richard P came down on Saturday to lead the group for the day. The night before Wendy K told us that the other Wendy wanted us to read a passage to get our thinking caps on, to get into the mind set for the topic we would be discussing. We looked at Romans 12:9-21. It’s a good passage, have a gander if you have a spare 5 minutes.
Anyway in our first session we looked at ‘love’ through the eyes of community. We were split up into two groups- male and female and we wrestled with passages. One thing Richard said before we looked at them struck a chord with me. “If there is a passage that provokes something in you, bring that up, talk about that”- that mightn’t be a direct quote but it was along them lines.
We looked at several pieces of scripture on love- inevitably 1 Corinthians 13 came up, or as I and a few friends in college like to call it ‘the luuuv chapter’. We studied deeper into some of the passages, like 1 John 3:16-20, 1 Peter 4:8, James 2:5-8 and so on and so on. I do not know how, but by the end of the conversation we were talking about the sacrificial system. Still wrapping my head around that.
A couple of hours later we had our evening session. The phrase ‘save the best for last’ gets thrown around a lot. But Janey, did God speak in that session. We focused more on ‘community’ in a church context. Wendy P started speaking, I was sat on the floor with my back against the sofa. I was right in front of the fire- if ever an opportunity to dose off, this was it. But no, this was not to be the case, I found myself captivated by what God was saying through her.
“When we come for communion we are entering into something a lot bigger than any of us. Communion is the body of Christ, when we join in that communion we are celebrating being Jesus’ body.” This made me sit up and take note. What a statement to make. I was like “WOW! That was good.” I hung on every word that was spoken, all the dots were seemingly joining together when I thought of church, love and community. As Wendy was starting to finish up she gave a real challenge for us all to take away.
“The church is the current incarnation of Jesus on earth,”
Well what does that mean? Surely Jesus is the incarnation of Jesus because that’s who he is! No. Jesus isn’t on earth anymore, well, physically at least. The church has a job, we are to express who he is to the world, we carry who he is, we show people who he is.
How can a person who has never set foot in a church, never read the bible and doesn’t know who Jesus is? You show them. You love one another deeply, you bear each other’s burdens, love as Jesus loved us, the list goes on and on and on.
Community is the key to showing the world what Jesus of Nazareth was like.
Are we as a community ready to show the world what Jesus is really like?
“By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”