Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Coming to the Table

Posted by Tim

"And [the believers] devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles." - Acts 2:42, 43

This house can feel like an island sometimes. It is amazing how we can shout a word like "community" and yet feel so lonely all at once. Perhaps one of the more subtle dangers of intentional living is unintentionally shutting everyone else out. Learning to love one another, serve one another, and forgive one another is a very time-consuming habit, and the ramifications for failing to do so are damning. But if we get to the point where our only communication with the Church outside our walls comes through blog posts, then we have failed to be good disciples of Jesus.

Shortly following Pentecost the Church in Jerusalem was exploding. Beyond the 3,000 who repented following Peter's sermon, Luke says that people were being added to their number daily. The first glimpse we are given into the lives of the young church reveals this: they were devoted to teaching, worshipping, breaking bread, and praying. And as a result, many wonders and signs were performed. The Gospel of the New Kingdom was tearing through the city.

We want to see change like this in Springfield. We have read and listened to great teachers. We are committed to worshipping, praying, and serving with our local church. But are we devoted to breaking bread together? And we aren't talking about a potluck here. Luke says in Acts 2:46 that they were breaking bread in their homes. How often do we open up our home? This was a defining characteristic of the early church, and it is a lost practice among Western believers. The freedom to gather publicly has allowed us to shield a large part of ourselves from one another: our home lives. This is the place where we are most comfortable and most truly ourselves. Where am I more likely to get to know you: in a pew or at the dinner table? Which is more disarming?

Perhaps it has been laziness. Perhaps it has been a fear that people will see more of our brokeness. For whatever reason, we have done a poor job of opening up our home and our table to our brothers and sisters in Christ. We are done with that. If you are in the area, or are going to be close by, please invite yourself over to the Mulberry House for dinner. We love having guests. We just didn't realize how much Jesus wants that too.

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