Churches as Communities (Larry Crabb)

A friend posted this quote on Facebook. It’s too good to pass up. I have nothing to add to it. I just want to tell you it’s from Larry Crabb. I haven’t read any of his booksin over 20 years, but this quote got me thinking that maybe I ought to go read him again!

Churches are rarely communities. More often they are social machines that run smoothly for a while, break down, then are fixed so they run smoothly again or noisily chug along as best they can. The invitation to greet pew mates during the early part of the worship service typically leads nowhere. It’s often nothing more than a squirt of oil on the gears. You could state your name was Bob or Howard or Rita or Sue and it would make no difference. Those kinds of interactions rarely create community – they more often substitute for it. The path of the Spirit is so very different. It’s narrower, steeper, and straighter than any other. It’s a path traveled only by worshipers who celebrate their dependence on God and each other by turning their chairs toward a small community of friends and sticking with them, and who find the power of God’s Spirit to make community work. They know that God gives them his Spirit and works miracles both in them and among them, not because they cleverly make it happen, but because they revel in their dependence and learn to hear the Spirit’s voice.

About Paul Pavao

I am married, the father of six, and currently the grandfather of two. I run a business, live in a Christian community, teach, and I am learning to disciple others better than I have ever been able to before. I believe God has gifted me to restore proper foundations to the Christian faith. In order to ensure that I do not become a heretic, I read the early church fathers from the second and third centuries. They were around when all the churches founded by the apostles were in unity. I also try to stay honest and open. I argue and discuss these foundational doctrines with others to make sure my teaching really lines up with Scripture. I am encouraged by the fact that the several missionaries and pastors that I know well and admire as holy men love the things I teach. I hope you will be encouraged too. I am indeed tearing up old foundations created by tradition in order to re-establish the foundations found in Scripture and lived on by the churches during their 300 years of unity.
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3 Responses to Churches as Communities (Larry Crabb)

  1. Shammah says:

    Test by Shammah. Ignore this. I’m trying to find out something about my comments.

  2. Jeff says:

    That quote came from his book The Safest Place on Earth which was recently updated and given a new name. Its now called Becoming a True Spiritual Community. I would recommend starting on this one if you’ve never read anything by him or haven’t read anything from him in a long time. Other worthy reads from him are Connecting, Shattered Dreams, and The Pressure’s Off. None of these are perfect books, but he makes quite a few valuable insights in each of them.

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