I came across an interview that the WittenburgDoor done recently and it "touched" something today. Here are two questions: back-to-back that got me thinking today.
DOOR: Why do you think we have so many Jesuses? My Jesus vs. your Jesus, Conservative Jesus, Liberal Jesus, Pentecostal Jesus, Episcopalian Jesus ...
BELL: People will grab all aspects of the truth. I guess it would be hard for one person to wrap their arms around that much truth. Easier to grab small pieces, I suppose. I'll take all the good. I want the best of the Assembly of God Jesus, the Latin America Jesus; I want the best of all of them. Jesus talked about fruit, told great stories—you can say anything, but its actions that you can't argue with.
DOOR: How did this Mars Hill thing happen, anyway?
BELL: Seven years ago, a group of friends were just dreaming of something better. I guess the natural evolution of each generation is to explore what it means. How to live the way of Jesus here and now. So we started and it now feels like fifty years packed into seven. Mars Hill is an old mall. Our "architect"—I say that as a joke—says everything about the church should scream "Welcome to our church service! Now get the hell out of here." We say, "This isn't the church, this is a church service. It's just an hour where we have some teaching, some singing and you'll hear about things in the community." If there are 43 "one anothers" in the New Testament—serve one another, carry one another's burden's, confess to one another—you can only do a couple of those in a church service. Until you have a community that you are journeying with, please don't say you are a part of this church. You just come to a gathering. We are very intentional about that. The question is, "Who do you call when your brother ODs on cocaine? If your mom is in the hospital, who comes and sits in the waiting room with you? When you cannot pay your rent, who do you go to and say please help me out?" That's your church.
I really liked the answer that he gives and it has caused me to think how we can help people plug into a true community (if they so choose). Also, it fuels the desire for me to be in that type of community in "our church" and to connect others to this; so we can truly journey together.