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Church 1.0: All for One?

“All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.” (Acts 2:44-45)

“All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.” (Acts 2:44-45)

My two younger brothers sometimes like to get really close to me and just stand there—or randomly touch me for no apparent reason. Why? Because they know it drives me crazy. I’ve got what some people call “space bubble” issues. I like to get close to people as long as we all understand the boundaries. I’m either a regular old introvert or a selfish control freak—or a little of both—but I love me my personal space.

That’s why these descriptions of the early Christians make me a little nervous. You? I mean I’m all for the church being close, being a family, being there for each other—as long as we all go home to our separate houses and watch our own TV shows and stay out of each others’ business when not invited.

Instead, these first churchies apparently erased a lot of those cultural boundary lines we all take for granted. They cashed out and put all their personal money in the same account. They didn’t just put some of their paycheck in the plate; they sold the stuff in their houses to pay each others’ rent and medical bills and groceries. (I’d be more willing to do that for someone else than to have them do it for me, you know?)

We don’t naturally understand that kind of no-boundaries mutual commitment. At least, I don’t. But in a way, it sounds kind of wonderful to be so connected to a group of people—because of our mutual love for God and each other—that the boundaries get blurry. Guess I’m going to need to keep shrinking my space bubble.

Think: Does it make you nervous to think about being that deeply integrated with a group of people—or do you wish your church was more like this today? Why?

Pray: Ask God to help you be willing to go beyond the boundaries to meet the needs of other Christians—and to have them do the same for you.

Do: Ask someone in leadership at your church for some examples of ways your church has come together to help out people in real need. (You might be surprised how generous your fellow churchies can be.)

 

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