Worldly perfectionism causes us to question whether we’re good enough, to miss opportunities because we’re afraid of failing, and to fixate on the immediate rather than eternal. It distracts us from fulfilling our mission by setting our hearts on achieving worldly gain rather than faithful gospel-centered living. In our sinful and competitive hearts, we all want to be that woman (or man): beloved and envied by all. We want to shine bright enough to attract everyone’s attention, and ensure they’re too dazzled by our splendor to notice our flaws.
Our culture at large gives renown and praise to celebrities for who they are, what they have accomplished, and the things they have produced. We taught that if you want your life to matter, you have to have people pay attention.
We are called by Jesus to follow Him into the world as an expression of our worship. As carriers of heaven’s DNA and the aroma of Jesus in His world, we want to carry His grace, truth, and beauty into all the places where we live, work, and play.
Is it any wonder that when our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ sets up His Passover that He does so around the table? He engages the senses. He pours out the good wine and breaks fresh bread. Have you ever been in the kitchen when the fresh bread comes right out of the oven? Have you ever cracked the crust and felt the warm air inside the bread hit your face? If you have, you won’t forget it. When Jesus calls us to His table, He calls us to remember while giving us something tangible and arresting that points us to a greater reality.
In our culture, we call a group of people who care for one-another a community. Broken families, codependent relationships, and an epidemic of loneliness have created a ravenous hunger for community in this generation. This is what we long for in and outside of the church. Community has become something we consume to meet our needs, not an act of loving others.