Summer 3D “practice” group

by susan on June 24, 2015

practiceOur mission reads, “We are a community of faith seeking to practice the way of Jesus together by loving God, our neighbor and our city.”  The word practice was not chosen haphazardly. It has deep significance in terms of what we believe the church to be and to be about.

While it can be tempting to see church as a provider of spiritual goods and services, that’s a far cry from how the first Christian communities began to live the way of Jesus together.  In Practicing the Way of Jesus: Life together in the Kingdom of Love, Mark Scandrette invites us to consider practical ways that we can become participants in the Way vs. passive church attenders. He writes:

So many of us want to live in the way of Jesus – pursuing a life that is deeply soulful, connected to our real needs, and good news to our world. Yet too often our methods of spiritual formation are individualistic, information driven or disconnected from the details of everyday life. We simply are not experiencing the kind of transformation that is the historically expected result of the Christ phenomenon. If Jesus of Nazareth demonstrated and taught a revolutionary way of love that is actually possible, alive with healing and hope, then we need a path for experiencing that revolution in the details of our everyday lives. Simply put, I believe we need to recover a sense of immediacy and action in our spiritual practices. Perhaps what we need is a path for discipleship that is more like a karate studio than a college lecture hall.

While some of us will not be stirred by the idea of a Jesus dojo, I think we get the idea. We will never learn the way of the kingdom by being passive attenders of religious activities.  We will learn the ways of the kingdom of God as we see, learn and practice them together.

This Thursday, June 25th at 6 p.m., we begin a 6-week 3D (dinner, discussion, discovery) group where participants will be invited to choose and live into a practice together.  I have no idea what practice the group will choose nor how it will shape us nor how it will change the way we love our neighbors.  What I do know is this: Like most of what we do as church, with God’s help, we will work it out together. That’s part of what it means to practice. We’re not seeking perfection; we’re hoping to lean on God and each other as we learn to live together in the kingdom of God.

We’ll start the night by sharing a potluck dinner together and will aim to finish our discussion by 7:30 p.m.  Our first gathering will take place at Kevin & Susan’s home (1443 Silver Street).  All are welcomed.

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