Some people have had great church experiences that have deeply met their needs. However, many others have had church experiences that were deeply damaging, boring, or fake, failing to address the reality of their struggles. Christ came down to earth to explain God’s perspective on our lives. But more than that, he came to meet us squarely in the middle of our struggles, where he offers us the help, empathy, and grace we need to find a way out.
Jesus’s ministry of help, empathy, and grace isn’t limited to the pages of the bible or the infancy of the church. One of his favorite means of accomplishing his work in the right-here-right now is through his body of believers, or his family; we call it the church. Thus the church is the continuation of Jesus’s ministry and mission.
Christian spirituality assumes that we are all made the same way, and that built into each of us is an innate quest for the meaning of life – a quest to find God. Authentically Christian spirituality and lifestyle can’t fully develop in autonomous people, living in isolation, each trying to figure out God on their own. It only happens within a family of integrated people, who give and receive Christ himself to and from each other. Therefore, church offers us community, mentoring, and shared experiences as a way for us to continue the ministry we see the apostles starting in the book of Acts. In essence, we are Acts Chapter 2008, following God in the way he designed us, as a tribe.