As Missional Community Groups jump back into gatherings for our fall semester, I have found my heart leaping with joy at what awaits us in the days ahead. In the midst of the myriad challenges that 2020 has brought, here at last is something to look forward to – being back together with brothers and sisters in Christ for fellowship, studying scripture, and prayer. It’s the treasure of biblical community – a gift from God to bless and keep his people.
The Lord often has unforeseen grace for us hidden among the saints. In the book of Acts, it is the uncommon community that the early church shared that sets the stage for the uncommon spiritual awakening that they witnessed around them. In Acts 2:42-46, we see a deep and profound devotion among the church – sharing of meals, worshipping together, praying together, sharing resources with all in need. And in the midst of all this, we are told a deep “awe came upon every soul” (v43) and “the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved” (v47). In the midst of deep community, the Lord awakened deep revival – all on vivid display for us within the inspired words of the scriptures.
This same vivid link between deep community and revival shows up again and again throughout history. It was the fierce bonds of brotherhood forged in the Holy Club of Oxford among George Whitfield, John Wesley, and Charles Wesley that eventually grew into the incredible revival across the English-speaking world that we now call The Great Awakening. The Holy Spirit breathed his anointing, life-giving breath upon these brothers to preach the Gospel with supernatural power, awakening myriads of souls on both sides of the Atlantic as a result.
We can go on – the Moravian Revival, the Welsh Revival, the Haystack Revival… Again and again in history, God has been pleased to release unique and supernatural outpourings of the Spirit among brothers and sisters gathered together in uncommon biblical community.
Hence my excitement, which I can best describe as simply a holy hopefulness that God might forge among these groups this year a depth in relationships like we have never seen, that could by His grace alone result in a breadth of Kingdom advancement like we have never seen as well. I’m not praying for another ordinary year; my heart is yearning for something more than ordinary. Our nation needs extraordinary, and it will only come from God. Oh might he move now as he has in the past – among the saints gathered under His Holy Name!
So, my encouragement to each of you who have stumbled upon this post? Join a Missional Community Group, and engage from the heart in every relationship at every gathering you can. Pray for these brothers and sisters. Be honest with these friends in Christ. Root out sin, fast and pray, and seek the face of God with them. Share meals, share joy, share fears – share your very souls. And might the Lord pour out his grace upon your friendships with unimaginable provision from heaven for you and for our world.
I am praying for you, family. Go find your people and give yourselves to them uncommonly.