Belonging to you

March 17, 2010

Being part of a church is saying to a specific group of people that I am willing to be with you. I am willing to belong to you, I am willing to be the people of  God with you. This is never a tentative commitment.

Engagement with others in depth is always difficult within the church, which is probably why so few try it and why there is so little genuine Christian community in the world.  In other groupings we choose those we want to be close to and those whom we want to hold at a distance, which means that any relationship in depth is on the basis of human affinity and the standards set for friendship.  The church is the only place where this does not happen. A person is not received into the membership of the church because she is a certain type or because he has arrived at a certain place in life, but because he is following Christ. We do not do the calling. Christ does the calling, and this very threatening because the people he calls are the people with whom we are to have intimate belonging. This gives us a strange assortment of people to be with.

Source: Journey Inward, Journey Outward by Elizabeth O’Conner

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