Rebranding Christianity - A new kind of community

In chapter 7, Jones talks about the formation of a new kind of community. He says Jesus came to form a "new community of diverse people who are united by what we have in common." To me, that means diverse tribes of people with differences, yet we all have this new kingdom community in common. It seems maintaining this broader, more inclusive definition of church has been getting more difficult. 

I feel honored to share and teach at times to church groups that are different than my own. I've experienced some wonderful openness and hunger for truth. I've also encountered some guarded skepticism, which is wise, but there is also a feeling of resistance. I try to stay in the common areas, but I also want to stretch their thinking. I've found it's a balancing act. If I go too far or don't properly prepare them for truth, they will tune me out and hear nothing else I say. If I don't push and challenge them at the right times, then I miss the moment to plant new seeds. It seems to be getting more difficult as tribes defensively limit their influencers and grow more exclusive. We should be hungry to hear and receive truth from anyone until the Holy Spirit prompt us otherwise. Today many are resistant and reluctant until you prove your one of them. How can we ever learn and grow that way?

Jones says, "Now is the time to resist the comfortable pull of sameness, and intentionally form multiethnic and multigenerational communities who love and welcome everyone always." If we could just remember that phrase "Resist the comfortable pull of sameness" things would begin to change. Sameness is not the same as unity in what we have in common. Seeking sameness is a fear and self-preservation response. 

Let's be open and welcoming to others. Let's habitually seek truth, live truth, and share truth. That's the way of this wonderful new kingdom community.

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