Better Together ďAlone we can do so little; together we can do so much.ĒHelen Keller
Have you ever wondered why Jesus gathered his followers into a learning, serving, worshipping community? Didnít Jesus know how difficult people are to get along with and how unappealing church communities would be, with all the deeply flawed and highly opinionated people out there? Didnít he know that he could have been much more successful preaching a more private type of religion, something along the lines of, ďGo out into nature and worship God. Be nice to people. The end.Ē Instead, Jesus pulled together a mishmash of followers and set about trying to make them fishers of people and the embodiment of Godís kingdom reign.
The early church struggled mightily with this same challenge: forming a community of people out of Jews and Gentiles, slaves and free, men and women, educated and uneducated. This unifying task turned out to be very difficult indeed. How much easier if those early missionaries had focused on converting people to a personal relationship with God and left the whole corporate, communal thing out of it.