And he said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life...For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you. Luke 12:22, 30-31.
It’s hard to teach about the church without looking through the window Luke gives us into the early church in Acts. We can see how they gave freely and lived as equals. In his book Who is the Holy Spirit, Amos Yong says this early community of Spirit filled disciples has clearly adopted the teachings of their Messiah and his views about wealth, possessions, and poverty. On the occasion recorded in Luke 12:22-31, Jesus instructs his followers to not be anxious about their lives. Yong says unlike others who hoarded up for themselves, the disciples are encouraged to strive after the kingdom instead."
This example of how we are to live is just as critical for the communities of disciples today that we call the church. We must find a way to bring the things of Christ to the forefront of our lives. We can't follow Christ if we're unable to release our dependence on the natural things of life. Yong says "these early believers has simply embraced the life and teachings of their Messiah, as handed down through the apostles." This is a profound statement and I don't think it can get more basic than this. They simply embraced the life and teachings of Jesus. This is how I define church - a community of people who have embraced Jesus Christ.