Some of you know that I have been restructuring my life to allow a different rhythm to flow. This is not always easy…others of you wonder what I might mean by rhythm. Let me explain.
Rhythm is the flow of your every day schedule, and your monthly routines. It’s what you do. If you were to spend a whole month with someone you would eventually get to see who they really are. What is really important to them, and also what they worship. Sometimes these patterns change depending on the season. Regardless of the season though our routines and patterns shape our rhythm.
Recently, as I have already suggested, I have been changing my beat. I realized that in my Christian life the beat that I was playing was not balanced correctly. Now before you misunderstand, my rhythm up unto this point has been largely structured on God. The structuring though was has been largely shaped by information gathering, whether it be with sermons, reading books, or blogs. But there are other elements that need to have a beat, for your life to be balanced in Christ.
All of my life I have been discipled in such a way that says the more you know and study, the more you will look the right way. Now, this has validity, but without the rest of the balance it will ultimately make you into a person that is about God and maybe even not ashamed of him, but not all that you could be. A while back I blogged on a book entitled “The Community Called Atonement,” a book by Scot McKnight. This book explains the Perichoresis, or God’s community with himself, relating to the trinity and the need for each piece to make God-God. It also explains the importance of community, but a much deeper one than what you are probably thinking of when I say that. This is one of the rhythms that has been missing and again let me explain.
In my past I have been in Bible studies, small groups, and various church communities. These have been great times, but not exactly the type of community that I have been missing. Generally speaking these gatherings again are typically more information gathering. Sure, we prayed for one another, and once in a while even confessed some sin. Also, shared coffee, dinner or dessert, and though many would say this is community, but this is not in reflection to the Perichoresis. Let me explain.
Real community happens in your household. Your relation to your family shows who you really are. It also shows your character and what you do at home when no other Christians or people are around. Real community happens when you share life together. Now, before we misunderstand again, there should be praying for one another and studying together in smaller community, but it should not stop there. The real life piece, the real life aspect, that is who you really are, is what is missing. I am not talking about just your close friendships that you already have. But a community of people sharing life together that are focused on God and on each other, and on the community around them. That last piece I will share at another time, and did so very slightly in my last blog. This community reveals something that most of us never share, that is who we are at heart, and what we worship. Sure, we call ourselves Christians, and may even act like it when we have to, but what about when we don’t have to?
Who are you? What sin controls your life? What fears do you have? What do you worry about? How are you reaching out to your neighbor? What do your coworkers think of you? These are some of the questions that are revealed when you purposely share life together. God does not want you just to know him and put on a facade, but actually to be his representatives to the world. The world distances itself and dislikes so many Christians due to hypocrisy, but if all your getting is information and then telling others hey you need this information too without allowing your character to be shaped in community, my guess is they don’t want it.
This type of community I am discussing and discovering take reshaping and changing your beat. This vital piece was modeled for us in the gospels with the twelve disciples and Jesus. They shared life together, that was focused on yes information gathering from Jesus, but community, day to day or sharing life together, and focused out to the world. You say that you are a Christian, then follow Christ, how did Jesus model this, “come follow me,” he said. Paul states follow me as I follow Christ, following the same pattern. Are you being discipled ? Does it look like this? I would guess your discipleship involves just information gathering, which yes is part of the process, but not the whole.
Most of us don’t know what we are missing, but being balance is where God wants us. Again as I have stated in other blogs, the Up to God, In to Community, and Out to the world is the balance I am referring. This is part of the Perichoresis and was exactly the way Jesus modeled discipleship. This is what The Way was about, what the early churched looked like, and the life Jesus calls you into.
Have you been unbalanced?
Maybe it’s time to reshape your rhythm.