Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash

“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.” – Acts 2:42

The beloved theologian and writer Henri Nouwen, in his book Reaching Out, provides a profound insight into the nature of true community: “Community is the place where the person you least want to live with always lives.” This challenging statement reminds us that authentic community is not about comfort or convenience, but about growth, transformation, and embodying God’s love.

In Acts 2:42-47, we see the early church living out this radical vision of community. They shared their lives, resources, and faith, supporting one another and embodying God’s love in tangible ways. This kind of community requires us to go beyond our preferences and embrace those who are different from us, even those we might find difficult to love.

Nouwen’s quote challenges us to rethink who we should be with in community. It pushes us to seek out relationships that stretch us and help us grow into our created and called identities. By embracing diversity and practicing patience, forgiveness, and grace, we more fully realize God’s vision for the world—a vision of unity, justice, and love.

Reflect on your own communities: your family, neighborhood, workplace, and church. Who are the people you find challenging to connect with? How might embracing these relationships help you grow in love and faith? Let’s commit to building authentic, Jesus-centered communities that reflect God’s vision for the world.

May God’s peace find you today. -Pastor Peter

Let us pray… Gracious God, help us to embrace true community, even when it is challenging. Teach us to love, forgive, and grow together, so that we may more fully realize your vision for the world. Amen.