About the Author

Kristen writes at her parenting blog, We Are THAT Family and is author of Rhinestone Jesus: Saying Yes to God When Safe Sparkly Faith is No Longer Enough and founder of The Mercy House. Follow Kristen on twitter as @WeareTHATfamily.

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  1. This made me smile this morning! Thank you! I am leaving my small community of love And dysfunction soon and have been overwhelmed and sad feeling. But reading this made me realize I will need to seek out community in our new home. Thank you!!!!!

  2. I am working on it. 10 months after the move. But what I realized this week was I was trying so hard to recreate old town community here. Old town community seemed so perfect from this view. I totally forgot it was messy too. I have neglected some connections in new town simply hecause they were not perfect fit for me…sigh…maybe God meant us to be good messy fit for them. Thank you for the perspective shift!!

  3. The temptation, always, is to surround ourselves with people who”get” us, whom we are comfortable with – who, as you say, serve US in some way. Being an introvert, this is my default position. I am so thankful for my husband, whose extravagant love for others has pushed me into some uncomfortable places with the marginal people that are drawn to the light shining in the Church but too often, find themselves on the outside looking in. Over and over I have been forced me to examine what it means to “love” someone. And my life has been far, far richer for it.
    Thank you, Kristen! Good food for thought!

  4. Community is a wonderful way to hold us accountable. As loving friends and family, we are looking after each other.

  5. Community is just a messy group of dysfunctional people trying to figure this thing out together. How very true! We are all just dysfunctional people trying to do our best to be good Christians in this sinful world!

    I do community with women’s Bible study at church. I get to know each one on a deep, personal level and pray for them all! I find it worthwhile to have good friends to talk to about life!

  6. thank you for sharing you are a God sent. I have many hang ups and have been always on the side that thinks its about what I can get from it. I am the one in the Bible that can easily take the speck out of someones life but I can’t see the beam in mine.. I have been praying for change in my life to grow not be easily hurt. Stop holding unto faults of others. Thanks for enlighting how I can really have a new outlook on people

  7. I agree with Regina above: Participation in a community is important. It holds me accountable, I have opportunity to practice my faith, and I can grow and be encouraged by the ministry of others. Someone has said that our brothers and sisters in Christ are “Jesus with skin on!” That’s what community is: the ministry of Jesus lived out with each other and for each other. Thank you for the encouragement to participate, Kristen, even when it gets a bit messy!

  8. I enjoyed your article. Just want to tell you that the phrase you use in your opening sentence should be “haphazard”.