Saturday, October 14, 2006

Faith is not something you do alone

How important is "community" in the life of a Christian? Very, according to Donald Miller in his book Blue Like Jazz. On page 175, he writes:

"Before I lived in community, I thought faith, mine being Christian faith, was something a person did alone, likes monks in caves. I thought the backbone of faith was time alone with God, time reading ancient texts and meditating on poetry or the precepts of natural law and, perhaps, when a person gets good and godly, levitating potted plants and pitchers of water.

"It seems that way in books. I had read a Christian book about the betterment of self, the actualization of the individual in the personal journey toward God. The book was all about focus and drive and perspective. It was all stuff you did in a quiet room. None of it had anything to do with community.

"If other people were part of the Christian journey, they had small roles; they were accountability partners or counselors or husbands or wives. I hadn't seen a single book (outside the majority of books in the New Testament) that addressed a group of people or a community with advice about faith.

"When I walked into the Christian section of a bookstore, the message was clear: Faith is something you do alone."

Miller's point in the rest of the chapter is that the Christian faith is not - and was never intended to be - something you do alone. We can't do it by ourselves. We need each other. We're not monks in caves. We're the body of Christ, with emphasis on the word "body." Thanks for the reminder, Don.


Blogger BgArt said...

Hey, I just read that book!
Hey, I live in Odessa!

Wow, it's a small cyber-world. I dig the blog.


6:35 PM  

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