"Being the church." This is a phrase people at Mercy Hill hear me say all the time, as in: "We're not looking to build a church, we're looking to be the church." For some this might be a difficult distinction to understand but I have enjoyed the evidence of it this week.
We have been out in Delafield getting the new church building for Lake Country ready (which is part of the reason I haven't had a chance to "blog" lately) and I have loved seeing the church "be" the church.
I think one of the most straight forward aspects of "being" the church is the concept of "koinonia". You first see the word used in connection with the church at it's very inception when the church is described in Acts 2: 42They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship (koinonia)... . When the word here is blandly translated to fellowship you do not capture the true impact the word is trying to convey. The idea of koinonia is to be unified in purpose. It is the idea of having all things in common and coming together to be and achieve corporately. It is so clear to see the value to a church body when it becomes unified in purpose and values. Unfortunately, because of the individualistic nature of our culture and the way the church has very often reflected it, we rarely see this value lived out in the church.
Remodeling our new building in Delafield has allowed me to enjoy a very tangible illustration of koinonia. Thanks guys and gals from both Bay View and Lake Country for being the church this week. If you want to experience the joy of koinonia you still have the opportunity to this week as we will be out there working Thursday through Saturday. See you there!