The believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, to the community, to their shared meals, and to their prayers. A sense of awe came over everyone. God performed many wonders and signs through the apostles. All the believers were united and shared everything. They would sell pieces of property and possessions and distribute the proceeds to everyone who needed them. Every day, they met together in the temple and ate in their homes. They shared food with gladness and simplicity. They praised God and demonstrated God’s goodness to everyone. The Lord added daily to the community those who were being saved.
– Acts 2: 42-47
That is one of my favorite scriptures. It’s got it all, love, compassion, sharing, food, and God. What more do we need?
Seriously though, I love how the early church lived. They were a community that gathered together to share the love and teaching of Christ. They shared what they had with one another so that no one went without, they shared meals together, they prayed together and for one another. They were united as a community. Their focus was on God and sharing his love and goodness with everyone. To me this is what we should be striving for as the ‘church’ even as a community in general, as a nation – especially during this time of fear and uncertainty. I feel like there might be less fear and uncertainty if this was the way we lived – caring for our neighbor so much that we don’t mind staying home, or wearing a mask, that we give a little extra to the food pantries as we are able, or if we know someone personally in need, we reach out to help as we are able. To me this way of living IS the church. Not the building, not the rituals (though those are comforting), but the sharing, the compassion, the love. Above all else, that’s what it means to be the church.
Will you pray with me?
Sometimes we forget what it means to really be your church. Forgive us. Help us to put your love and compassion above all else and to share it every minute of every day. Amen.