Sir Godfrey Gregg
Community — a body of individuals who unite together in fellowship, sharing attitudes, interests, and goals.
Glance to your left, then to your right. Who’s standing beside you? Would you consider them friends? Is the time that you spend together making all of you better people? Or do things you do together sometimes lead you to regret?
Anyone who walks with wise people grows wise. But a companion of foolish people suffers harm. Proverbs 13:20
Relationships are like nutrition for your soul. Do the people closest to you make you healthier? Or do you binge on junk food together? You are directly influenced by the people you spend the most time with. Even if you feel like you’re different from them right now, in five years… you won’t be.
That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. 26 And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. 27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. 1 Corinthians 12:25-27
God made us need each other. We all have different gifts and strengths, different failings and weaknesses. When we join together, we can look out for one another, help each other, encourage one another, and even challenge each other to grow.
Here are 3 simple things you can do to start building your community:
Cross the Street
Do you know your neighbours? If you live on the same street, or even in the same building, you already have something in common. Don’t overthink this. Jesus loves your neighbour. Maybe you will too… and you just don’t know it yet.
Challenge: Start a conversation with a handshake and, “I’m sorry, we haven’t met before. My name is _____. What’s yours?” Even if you’re shy, you only have to be brave for 30 seconds. Knowing your neighbour will help you with peace of mind in your community. You will get to know everyone who passes your street and is not living in the neighbourhood.
Share an Experience
We all have things we need to talk about, challenges that would be helpful to process in conversation. And we all have something to offer, even if it’s just a sympathetic ear.
Challenge: Invite a friend to do something together: share a meal, tackle a backyard project, or just take a walk. Talk about whatever. Just be honest, and get real. You can invite those on your street to start a beautification project.
Invite Deeper Friendships
The Bible reminds us again and again that we need relationships with people we can trust: Close friends who will encourage you, inspire you, challenge you, love you, and pray for you. And they need you to do the same for them.
Again I remind you to know your surroundings and be a part of your community.