As I sum up this week’s reflections on church, I want to conclude by saying that the church, whether gathered together some place, or dispersed through out the wider community in the week, is something I love. It is something Jesus loves because we find our life in him. It is something the Father loves, because from the beginning of time God has been looking for a people who become living stones to form a spiritual building into which he pours his divine life. Jesus pointed people towards the physical temple in Jerusalem and said ‘this isn’t it…I’m it’. God is making us a bride fit for her husband, a body expressing Jesus indwelling life in the world. It is the embryo of God’s new creation started here and now in the middle of history, called to make heaven on earth our business.
There is no ‘but’ to follow. That’s the bottom line for me. The heart of church is Jesus and our participation in his life.
I want to gather with the church; I want to pray and be prayed for by the church; I want to eat and celebrate life with the church; I want to learn more about Jesus with the church; I want to sing and celebrate with the church; I want to laugh and cry, weep and mourn with the church; I want to fight for justice and peace with the church; I want to impact the world with the church by living out the way of Jesus; I want to raise my kids with the church; I want the whole world to be connected at the deepest level with Jesus, and consequently, the church. And then, one day, I will see it in all it’s glory around the throne of our Father as we live out our life eternally in the New Creation.
Let’s not make it about something else.