“Those who love their dream of a Christian community more than the Christian community itself become destroyers of that Christian community, even though their personal intentions may be ever so honest, earnest, and sacrificial.” (Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together)
If we are not careful, most of us will have an idealized community that we cling to in our minds. Bonhoeffer notes that such a dream will lead us toward a tendency to demand that our dream be fulfilled by God, by others, and even by ourselves. In doing so, we can be quick to judge other Christians because they didn’t share our interests, they weren’t hip enough, they didn’t meet my expectation of friendliness, they probably didn’t have anything that would benefit me, they weren’t very interesting people, etc. Are those things really what makes true community or fellowship?
Perhaps you may have had thoughts like these about church, or even about RCF, but is it not possible to love and serve those fellow believers? We admit, we’re not perfect. We are not your ideal community, nor will we ever be. But I hope that you will be challenged today to think about your expectations for community. We are people who may have very little in common with each other when it comes to majors, nationalities, hobbies, social groups on campus, or political interests. Yet we find ourselves united. How? Those of us who have placed our faith in Jesus are united in Him. We are united by one gospel message, which gives us hope. We share the same Lord, and the same mission. Have you been loving your dream of Christian community more than the people in Christian community? As we seek to daily follow Jesus, we encourage one another and challenge one another in ways that our “ideal community” never would have.