Created for Community: Attachment and Christian formation
Sermon Teachings Summer 2022
Even before the devastation and communal separation caused by COVID-19, congregations were already seeing telltale signs of decline in membership, discipleship, spiritual growth, and deep community. The factors driving such decline are myriad. The goal of this seven-week focus is to revive the vision and power of the church as a community. God created us to be in community, not isolation. A careful reading of Scripture reveals that it is impossible to be a vibrant follower of Jesus without Community.
As German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer says in Life Together:
Christianity means community through Jesus Christ and in Jesus Christ. No Christian community is more or less than this. Whether it be a brief, single encounter or the daily fellowship of years, Christian community is only this. We belong to one another only through and in Jesus Christ.
|Date||Scripture|| Sermon Title
/Link to Podcast
|Acts 2:42-47||Irresistible Community||The early church gatherings were not perfect, but they were rooted in four central practices that helped them flourish.|
|May 15||I Corinthians 12:12-26||Belonging||In the body of Christ, everyone matters, not only for the health of the body as a whole, but also to enable each individual to operate at full potential.|
|May 22||Mark 4: 3-9,10,13-20||Healthy Soil, Healthy Growth||Healthy growth is determined by the receptivity of the soil.|
|May 29||I Peter 4:7-11||Hospitality
||The power of God’s love stretches our love for each other. We love each other because he first loved us.|
|TBD||Young People sharing our Stories||You will NOT want to miss this special Sunday service!|
|June 12||John 15:12-17||Friendship||Followers of Jesus are called to friendship with Jesus and with one another.|
|Colossians 2:6-7||Rooted in Christ||The future of the faith rests in its past.|
|June 26||Acts 12:1-18||A Praying Community||The power of a praying congregation. (Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him Acts 12:5).|
|Ephesians 4:1-6||Unity in Community||Unity in Community|
The ACTS Prayer Model
We believe regular time in prayer with God is essential to our growth in relationship with him and others. Here is an easy-to-remember prayer model you can use to begin the process of regular prayer with God.
A – Adoration: We bring glory and praise to God, acknowledging his greatness in each of his three persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
C – Confession: Acknowledging where we have failed in walking in the ways we are called, we confess our sins, trusting completely in his desire to forgive them, and in the completeness of that forgiveness through the righteousness of Jesus Christ.
T – Thanksgiving: We recall God’s specific goodness to us as individuals, as members of families, groups, and institutions, and as part of the local and universal body of Christ. We give thanks for the provision we have received and for the blessing of God’s presence in our lives.
S – Supplication: Knowing that God loves us, we bring our cares and concerns, desires, dreams, and needs, as well of those we know, love, work with, and are part of community with. We pray for our leaders at all levels of responsibility, from small group leaders to heads of state.
We also suggest adding the final step:
L – Listening: Be quiet and set your mind to listening to the Lord. Have a paper and pencil ready to write down whatever and whomever comes to mind, praying for them and asking God for wisdom about why these thoughts have come to mind.