Life in Community: Joining Together to Display the Gospelby Published 04 Aug 2015
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Life in Community: Joining Together to Display the Gospel Ebook Description
Life in Community: Joining Together to Display the Gospel PDF Book has good rating based on 143 votes and 24 reviews, some of the reviews are displayed in the box below, read carefully for reference. Find other related book of "Life in Community: Joining Together to Display the Gospel" in the bottom area.
WHAT MAKES A COMMUNITY EXTRAORDINARY?
When people live in community moved by the gospel and marked by the Spirit, great things happen.
They commit to one another. They grieve together, sing together, eat, pray, and play together. They love, serve, honor, encourage, and provide for each other gladly. And they live on mission together.
Hearts are healed, walls come down, and outsiders come in. No competition. No pretense. No vain conceit. Just full hearts breaking bread and giving freely.
It is nothing short of amazing.
Most of us live in a shadow of what God intended for us. Life in Community calls us into the light. Reclaiming Scripture’s stunning vision of gospel-centered community, it inspires us to live in love unbounded. Read it, live it, and join the movement: Help unleash the power of extraordinary community.
6-Week group study included.
Life in Community: Joining Together to Display the Gospel Reviews
Having read another book by the author which I happened to enjoy, I was struck by the way that this book resembled the writings of Bonhoeffer and Nouwen, who were both deeply interested in the way that believers lived in community , or at least should. I must admit this is not something I do very well. The author speaks a lot in this book about the isolation that many Christians feel and this is definitely something that I am familiar with, but I must admit that I do not feel that I do community very well. The author's fondness for telling personal stories about himself and his own life struck me as a bit awkward as well, especially as the author had a lot of things to say about such issues as his own struggles to be a good husband and a miscarriage his wife had. Hopefully his family is okay with his candor, because even as a fairly candid writer about my own life, I found much in the author's approach that struck me as uncomfortable, and given that the author was encouraging believers to live in community with other believers who encourage them, this may not have been the best way to go about it.
Like the author's previous book, this one is about 180 pages and also ends with a leader's guide for a six week discussion course on the book's material that includes questions for readers to talk about with others in a group. The first part of the book contains three chapters on forming a community with a discussion of the need for community (1), the common ground that believers have in their faith if not their personal interests (2), and the way that a relationship with God and others should help us be continuously transformed into the image of God and Christ (3). After this the author talks about some of the necessary values for living in godly community, like bringing our best to the table of fellowship (4), refusing to wear masks to hide our true selves (5), hating the right things like evil and injustice (6), being stuck like glue to what is good (7), behaving with kindness, affection, and honor towards other believers (8), persevering together and providing encouragement (9), meeting the needs of our brethren when we become aware of them (10), and pursuing hospitality even it means exposing our imperfections (11). The third section urges the reader to do something and start now to building a strong community (12) before the closing leader's guide.
One thing that can be praised about the author's approach is his acknowledgement that life in community with other believers is messy. We have to be comfortable in showing ourselves to others for who we are and others have to be comfortable in showing themselves to us. This is not an easy task even if we are the sort of people who work hard on our honesty. Yet if we are to avoid being isolated, we have to find community and feel as if we are part of a larger world that cares about us even if it often places unwanted demands on us and is nosy and intrusive. Yet when we enter into a relationship with God at baptism and have the Holy Spirit placed inside of us by God, we are called to be one with our fellow brethren as God and Jesus Christ are one, and that intimacy is a scary and messy thing. It is little wonder in an age as terrified as intimacy as our own is--and I certainly speak for myself here--that we would be terrified of genuine community, but that is what we signed up for when we became a part of God's Family at baptism. Living up to that call is by no means an easy one.
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The excellent cover design, coupled with the title and purpose of this book drew my attention initially. Who doesn't long for better community? As the subtitle- joining together to display the gospel- suggests, this paperback offers Biblical advice on how to grow closer for the glory of God. I really enjoyed and benefited from reading this book. I know there are many out there and although this may not be the absolute best of the books on community, it is definitely worth reading. I am grateful that I got the chance to read it and review it. I think it would be even more beneficial to follow through with the included 6-week discussion questions. In this ''instant'' age full of distant and ofttimes unsocial social media, people need to learn and implement a real sense of love , friendship and community.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.
I try not to rate everything 5 stars, but I think this one deserves it. This is a book I not only enjoyed, but will consider purchasing and giving away copies to others. I received it as a gift myself, and am glad I did!
To be sure, Dustin Willis is scratching where I itch. This book is about helping us grow to have the kind of relationships within the church body that God desires for us and that he designed the church to provide. The book gives both a vision for biblical community, how that community is formed, and the necessary and practical values that will be present when we live in true biblical fellowship. Each chapter includes both a study of the Scripture as well as real life examples and practical application of its principles. The chapters end with a helpful set of questions to move you toward living out the principles covered in the book. The book is suitable for small group reflection and includes an appendix for leading a 6-week study.
One of the strengths is that it is written in a way that has a broad application. It does not teach a particular method of community (cell groups, Sunday school, etc.) but lays out what biblical community looks like practically and tangibly in any setting. It's principles, in my opinion, are presented in a way that can apply among a variety of sociological and cultural settings. Further, the author recognizes the differences in temperament among people and describes biblical community for a church with both introverts and extroverts (helpful, in my opinion, as much written in this genre seems to be aimed at the latter).
In the end, this book is a call to action. There is more than just theory here and there is no new model or method to try. Rather, its a practical description of what God has designed the body of Christ to be, some practical wisdom on how to get there, and a call for us to pursue that heavenly vision.
The author expresses relevant and eternal truths for the Christian community emphasizing the value of biblical faith expressed in unity with other believers.
I particularly like the author's humility and authenticity as he shared examples from his own life and church ministry. Rather than just rating the book a definite four-star, I gave a five-star because of the study guide questions and biblical passages provided at the book's end.
The resource is invaluable and was the reason I valued this book. Six weeks of reading the book and implementing its concepts was powerful for me because of the practical, pointed questions of the study guide. My family relationships, friendships, and social interactions have deepened and improved since spending time with others reading this book.
Anyone still pursing Jesus alone or desiring to empower the local church and community can receive encouragement and insight from this book.
There are a lot of books about the church as a community. Bonhöffer’s is the classic work, but this one unpacks Christian community in the life of the church in a very accessible and graspable way. If you are struggling with knowing how to live life in church life or wondering whether church community is essential for Christian flourishing, then read this one. I was both encouraged and challenged.