10 Reasons Why You Need Community

In Advice and Encouragement, Relationships, Single by Debra Fileta11 Comments

I love to talk about relationships.

As a Professional Counselor and Author, it’s a topic that I’m passionate about and one that I feel led to write about, speak about, and even just think about. But sometimes I wonder if our culture at large tends to get fixated on romantic relationships, without remembering the other important relationships that God calls us into.

In order to learn about love- we need people.

The concept of Christian community is such an important part of love, because it’s within the context of relationships that we have the opportunity to express and receive love. God is so creative, in that He gave us a body of believers as a way to experience the give-and-take of love, no matter what our “romantic” relationship-status.

Here are some reasons why it’s really important to be in relationship with other believers:

1. Community challenges you to be more like Jesus (Hebrews 10:24-25). Nothing makes you more like Jesus than the daily grind of interactions with others. We often think about marriage when it comes to this refining process, but the truth is God also gives us community as a way to become more like Him. God’s word reminds us that we are put in relationships in order to encourage one another in our pursuit of God and His Kingdom. It’s within the context of community that we are given the opportunity to be refined as followers of Christ.

2. Community meets practical needs (Acts 2:42-47). Just like in the early church, community is a place where we come to get our physical needs met. We need to learn to let down our walls and ask for help from our brothers and sisters in Christ. Whether we need someone to pick up medicine for us when we’re sick, cook us a meal at the end of a long week, or help us carry a financial burden- the body of Christ was made to support and love one another in practical ways. We can learn a lot about love within the exchange of practical needs.

3. Community carries you emotionally (Galatians 6:2). Just as important as physical needs- are the emotional needs we carry through life. We are given the the responsibility to support each other in hard times, and to carry one another’s burdens. As much as we need to be available for our brothers and sisters in Christ, we also need to have the courage to ask them to come alongside of us when we’re the ones in need of support, prayer, or a shoulder to cry on. It’s important to learn to be real with one another- because that’s what true community is all about.

4. Community reveals your gifts and talents (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12). Two are better than one, because there is double the strength, double the stamina, and double the talents. Within the context of community we’re given the opportunity to discover our gifts and our talents, and to use them to bless others. We’re each given a very specific role in the body of Christ and it is within these relationships that our roles can be used to glorify God to the fullest. We’re part of something really special (1 Corinthians 12:27).

5. Community opens your eyes to the needs of others (1 Thess 5:14). Within community we are encouraged to look around at the needs of those around us. We’re called to strengthen those who are weak and to and encourage those who are down and out. Community calls us out of our self-centeredness and self-absorption by giving us the responsibility to look outward.

6. Community empowers your relationship with God (Proverbs 27:17). There is something real about the concept of power in numbers. When we are surrounded by other believers, we feel empowered in our faith and may even be more sensitive to God’s presence in our lives. There’s something powerful about believers joining together, making each other accountable and being a sort of a witness of one another’s lives. We need people checking in on us, asking the hard questions, and challenging us to really live out our faith.

7. Community meets our need for love (Proverbs 17:17). There’s no denying that we are men and women who crave love. We were made to, by a relational God who longs for us to be in relationship with Him. But even more amazing, is that God gives us the gift of each other as a way to meet our earthly needs for love. This brotherly love (phileo) that we’re given is a beautiful representation of the greatest Friend who laid down his life for us. We’re also called to love each other in this beautiful way.

8. Community offers opportunities for confession which leads to healing (James 5:16). There’s power in confession. It gives us the chance to bring to light the things that have been holding us back in darkness. Within community, we’re given the opportunity to get real with one another, to confess our sins, and to break free from the things that are holding us back from living God’s best life. True community requires transparency, authenticity, and confession.

9. Community teaches you to work through conflicts (1 Corinthians 1:10). Bring any group of people together and one thing is certain- conflict is inevitable. But we’re called to work through our divisions with one another as the body of believers. We’re asked to be a united body, which isn’t always easy, nor natural. It’s a humbling experience that teaches us to lay down our pride, to learn assertiveness, and to enhance our communication. We need each other, because it’s within the messiness of relationships with one other that we’re reminded of our desperate need for Him.

10. Community gives you the chance to forgive (1 Peter 4:8-11). There is nothing more beautiful than the picture of the gospel displayed through our healthy interactions as a body of believers.  Within this body we’re bound to get hurt, and then guaranteed the opportunity to forgive. We get to feel what Jesus felt as He suffered wounds at the hands of the people He loved, and then loved them anyway. This is the hardest part about community, but it’s the part that makes us most like Him.

It’s time to recognize your God-ordained need for people, and then seek to build relationships with the people God has placed in your life. As you think through this list and read through the last few posts about community, ask yourself how much you’ve allowed your relationships with people to impact your life and your faith? What is holding you back?

Catch other articles about community here:  Why Marriage Isn’t Enough

Debra Fileta is a Professional Counselor, speaker, and author of the book True Love Dates: Your Indispensable Guide to Finding the Love of Your Life, and 21 Days to Jump Start Your Love Life, where she writes candidly about dating, relationships, and how to find true love. You may also recognize her voice from her 150+ articles at Relevant Magazine or Crosswalk.com! She’s also the creator of this True Love Dates Blog!  Connect with her on Facebook or Twitter

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11 Comments on "10 Reasons Why You Need Community"

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anthony
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hi sorry but I don’t trust people I’m tired of getting hurt its in Gods hands now bcs I gave up

Dee
Guest

Community can be so challenging esp. for those of us who the Lord has blessed with accomplishments and strengths, oddly enough. I was in a small church and experienced community as Christians resenting the calling God had on my life (in Corpoarate America). I still struggle, over 5 years later and having moved away, with the after affects of this and an inability to trust other Christians! I felt taken for granted and used. What to do to regain a sense of trust?

Jess
Guest
I do think this article only happen in ideal world, where people in community has a common objectives: to grow in God, then this can happen. I’ve already been in that community before. However, I’m now moved and shifted abroad because of work where the church community is quite political that makes me want to quit. Not everything’s quite roses sometimes, and Debra, as much as I like your article, but this article is not really deep. For me personally, I’m longing for a community where I can grow & the people inside it can be blessed by my presence… Read more »
Jess
Guest

Also, sorry to say, for me personally, we as human being actually long for a loving church community. Therefore, (I apologize), advice on how we need those doesn’t really necessary. We know we need it but unfortunately it’s not easy. Thus, for me, I may take this article to another level, to apply those points in a broken community, although I may hurt by the people inside it sometimes.
Thank you

Dee
Guest
Really??? Church people are some of the nastiest people I know. I love my Pastor which keeps me going to my church, but they are some of the most clickish people and the small groups we have are more for the families not the singles. In fact most of the activities in our church are geared towards families. This is why many like myself end up leaving the church because of all the back biting. I hear Joyce Meyer say all the time, just because you belong and go to church it does not make you a Christian. Confession…..I wouldn’t… Read more »
princevinco
Guest

I think that accepting that we need a community is one thing and to benefit maximally from the community is another thing. To benefit maximally from the community, we must be committed to the community.

Dee F
Guest
Hi – it seems like there are two Dees in this comments section! I am the first Dee commenter. To the second Dee – I feel your pain. I have also decided not to engage in small groups due to trust issues. However, when the Bible speaks of confession, it is talking about confessing our sins before the Lord. It is tricky to confess to other people and we are all well-advised to be careful, prayerful and choosy as/before we do so, I believe. I want to walk in a spirit of love towards everyone, and to learn to forgive… Read more »
Jess
Guest

Well said, Dee! I agree w/ u

Francesca
Guest

Yes I agree to all that. I prefer to help people that are not Christian’s. They apreation you more. Its ok we are only human.

Edgar Duarte
Guest

I totally agree with you Dee, I can sometimes go months without fellowship outside of church with my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. I try to connect with them but they are always too busy.

Tele A
Guest
“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” – James 5:16 You always got to go back to scripture to provide for you what a good example of community and what it should look like. The Word of God is the standard, not people. People are imperfect, therefore will hurt other people. We still need relationships though (1 Corinthians 12:12-31) and need to love like Christ (1 Corinthians 12:31 – 13:13). It isn’t easy but it wasn’t easy for Jesus… Read more »
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