You can almost call "missional communities" a trend. It even made it to wikipedia. You can almost call it that, except that the connotation of a trend is something fleeting and superficial and from what I have seen these groups are anything but.
My missional community (I know you don't like that term, guys, but it works, okay?) is full of diversity. Ages ranging from 6 months to 60 years old, married, single, engaged, "it's complicated," people with kids, people without kids, students, teachers, business owners and unemployed. We are all in different places in our lives and in our spiritual maturity, but we are supernaturally bound by the same Spirit. At some point each of us has decided to resign our lives to Jesus and as we are working that out in our own day-to-days we are coming alongside one another to work it out as a Body.
The message of the Bible is one of love: an insane, all encompassing, relentless love. It is a love not just for "me," but for "us." Most of the books of the New Testament were written to communities of believers, not individuals. Our culture is so wrapped up in the mindset of "I" that we forget one of the most basic human needs is relationship. I have grown to appreciate so much more the idea of "us" since being a part of a real community.
|Oh yeah, we also eat really, really good food.|
One weekend last September we went away for a last minute retreat with a good portion of our community. It was so familiar and easy. We weren't with a church group or a bunch of friends even, we were with family. Our brothers and sisters, Raychel's aunts and uncles and cousins. We cooked together and worshiped together. We joked around and discussed theology. We dove into Scripture together and prayed with one another. We didn't have a program to follow or a waiver to sign... We just got to be together and enjoy one of the many fruits of being in God's family.
|Mikel holding George (which is kind of a big deal for him).|
|Tom (Tish's Hubby)|
|Hannah & Mikel|
|Tim (of Tim & Tessa)|