One of my favourite quotes, which I have used a couple times already, is from H. Richard Niebuhr’s Christ and Culture:
The power and attraction Jesus Christ exercises over men never comes from him alone, but from him as Son of the Father. It comes from him in his Sonship in a double way, as man living to God and God living with men. Belief in him and loyalty to his cause involves men in the double movement from world to God and from God to world. Even when theologies fail to do justice to this fact, Christians living with Christ in their cultures are aware of it. For they are forever being challenged to abandon all things for the sake of God; and forever being sent back into the world to teach and practice all the things that have been commanded them.
This can be applied to how our community functions. The call to gather together, to build each other up, to be known in that community, is there as we long for Christian fellowship. But it is also the truth that as we join in this Christian fellowship we realize that the peace we find there should and must extend into the lives of those around us. It is the double call of coming together and the going out.
The gospel of Luke announces the gospel message – Jesus is Lord – and Acts outlines how the gospel message unfolds in the lives of the people who choose to live into the reality of that message. Acts is a book of the resurrection breaking forth. It begins with a time of wonderful amazement and newness that only the reversal of death could bring. It is a time of dreaming and dreams coming true. That is how we would like to frame this season. A time of dreaming of who we can be as an intentional gathering worshiping community and those who are sent out from that community into the communities we live in.
So we want to dream about what we could be as we come together and as we go out.
One way to create room for dreaming to happen is that in the response time on May 18th and May 25th we will leave time for you to dream, to dream on our own or to dream as a group. We will frame this time of dreaming in the teaching and then allow the Spirit to speak to us about how we can embrace the power of the resurrection in our coming together and our going out.
On Pentecost Sunday, June 8th, we will celebrate the giving of the spirit and this time of dreaming by sharing a potluck meal together and then sharing our dreams.
So let’s dream together in this time of celebrating the resurrection!