Jesus prays, “I pray also for those who will believe in Me through [the disciples’] message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as You are in Me and I am in You. May they also be in Us so the world may believe that You have sent Me.” John 17:20,21)
This incredible prayer by Jesus shows His heart’s desire for community. True Christian community is unified and walks together. That is why the early Christian church sold their possessions and gave to those in need (Acts 4:32-37). They also believed that a community built in the LORD was powerful for the LORD. Signs, wonders, and miracles (2 Corinthians 12:12) accompanied such communities and the Word of the LORD spread rapidly. People transformed from within by the Spirit of the LORD, lived in community, and as the world witnessed this community they came to know Jesus.
I often wonder what the power of community means to Building Hope. What does it mean to open our doors in the community of Beverly and invite people in? Many that come to Building Hope are not practicing Christians, but the effects of Christian community are still powerful.
This past week we had a barbeque at Building Hope. Over 200 burgers were served and it was an extremely busy day, but as the day winded down 2 people came in and sat down. I felt Jesus lead me to the table and we talked. I had many “Martha” duties to perform, but I felt the LORD holding me to this table for discussion. After an hour of discussion, Scripture, and prayer we parted ways. I am unsure how the LORD used that event, but the community created at Building Hope really impacted someone that day.
I dream of a Christian community that lives together and shares what resources the LORD has given them. A community that does life together, a community that encourages one another to take larger steps of faith in the LORD, a community that prays together, a community that believes in miracles, a community that shows the world the love of Jesus in action. Building Hope is closer to this vision than many communities in North America I believe. At Building Hope, people lack the material possessions that often distinguish us, we share what we have and we pray for provision, many are hurting so we pray for healing, and Building Hope shows the community that the church cares for the needy.
Building Hope is a community with a foundational Mission Statement: “In the Name of Jesus, we will love.” Our teachings come from Jesus, our strength comes from Jesus, we pray in the Name of Jesus, and we are hoping more will come to know the love of Jesus. Please consider supporting our vision for a deeper level of community at Building Hope.