In a city filled with lonely people, isolated parents and folks who just don’t fit in,
I see something beautiful. I see Jesus building community.
I see it on Sunday mornings when a new family finds themselves surrounded by people who already are loving them. An hour after the benediction, they’re still lapping it up like famine victims at a buffet. It may be their first uninterrupted grown-up conversation in weeks. Brand-new friends are keeping an eye on their little ones as they explore in wonder a wooden maze of pews. That’s Jesus building community.
I see it on weekdays when moms gather outside by the Chapel to connect while the kids build castles out of chunks of busted pavement. I see it on Tuesday afternoons when Muslims and Buddhists and atheists from around the world gather together in a church building to share a meal with Jesus-followers who love them. I see it on weeknights when men who all their lives have hidden in shame gather together to support and encourage one another in battling their inner demons.
God is building community. A gospel community. And it’s beautiful.
Building | Community
It’s a vision St. Louis needs. I pray continually that God would build this church into a safe
place to be a sinner. A safe place to pull off the mask. A safe community in which to be known.
A safe place to grow up. A safe to meet Jesus.
But it takes more than a sermon series to build gospel community. It takes Jesus.
And it takes you.
Imagine if the kids didn’t have to play with chunks of busted pavement. Imagine the kids frolicking among statues of a lion with lambs in a play garden. Imagine it’s fenced in so parents didn’t have to nervously glance at the street. Imagine if people with disabilities could join in without wondering whether they’ll find an accessible restroom. Imagine cyclists having a place for their bicycle. Imagine sanctuary air conditioning that would enable us to welcome more weddings, more conferences, more citywide gatherings… more community.
If the work of Jesus is to build this kind of gospel community in St. Louis—if that is his vision for Memorial—then I want to get on board with what he’s already doing.
Because it’s not just about a building. It’s about Jesus building community.
And It’s beautiful.
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