When I think of “COMMUNITY” I think: love, conversation, compassion, help, accountability, friendship, a common bond.
We are getting set to rev up the Proverbs 31 Ministries Online Bible Study Community for a new study: Limitless Life, by Derwin L. Gray. As we prepare, Shelly encouraged us to think about what COMMUNITY is all about…What do I need from a community? What can I bring to a community?
So…what does the Bible say about COMMUNITY?
The word “community” first appears in the NIV translation in Genesis 28:3:
“May God Almighty bless you and make you fruitful and increase your numbers until you become a community of peoples.”
This is Abraham’s son Isaac passing down the Abrahamic Covenant Blessing to his son Jacob. It is talking about God’s People–we are made to be in COMMUNITY with other believers!
The Greek word that is translated as COMMUNITY in the NIV translation of the Bible, is “qahal“, and is defined as: “assembly, convocation, congregation.” We are called to assemble–gather–together with other believers.
The following verses for me define Biblical Community:
“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
1 Thess. 5:11
“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” Heb. 3:13
“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Heb. 10:24-25
This is EXACTLY what I need, and have found in Proverbs 31 Ministries Online Bible Studies!! OBS is a place where the leaders lovingly encourage, and equip others in the community with God’s Word. It is a COMMUNITY of Jesus OOZIN’ girls who firstly love the Lord, and then love each other! OBS is a community where we can gather together to hear God’s Word. It is a gathering of women who speak truth into each other’s lives, encourage each other, pray for each other, build each other up, hold each other accountable, and, through relationships formed, rebuke each other in love. That is what I need from a COMMUNITY!
I come to this COMMUNITY with an open heart and mind. I bring myself. I bring the truths that God has planted in my heart, and the desire that He has given me to share those truths with others. I bring the lessons that God has taught me throughout the many trials in my life, and the desire to equip others by sharing what He has taught me. I bring the JOY that God gives me every day, and the desire for others to experience that same joy in their own lives.
OBS is a place where virtual hugs, can turn into real hugs! Community is where relationships can be formed, and BFFs can be found! Through OBS, I recently spent a weekend with some of the best friends a girl could ask for, and it was like we’d been together since childhood!
Will you join us? Sign up for Limitless Life here.