by Chris Surratt
We all need community. In fact, we were designed by God to be in community. You can see it modeled for us with the perfect relationship of the Trinity in Genesis.
Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness. They will rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the livestock, all the earth, and the creatures that crawl on the earth.” – Genesis 1:26
And then Jesus prayed for this community with His final prayer before His death on the cross:
May they all be one, as You, Father, are in Me and I am in You. May they also be one in Us, so the world may believe You sent Me. – John 17:21
So why do so many of us try to go it alone? We are men. That is the general answer and is what a lot of us were taught growing up. Real men can pull up the bootstraps and get ‘er done on our own. Even the appearance of leaning on someone else can make us look weak and feel like failures. I could go on and on with a long list of cultural excuses why you can’t be in community, but here are three strong reasons why you should be.
1. Being a man can be a lonely world.
Because we have been taught from birth to go it alone, we end up lonely. Even though we may have people around us all day at the office, we can still go without the life-giving community we desperately need. Your family can provide a piece of it–and our community should start there–but they can only do so much. Ultimately, we need fellow brothers in Christ to walk alongside us.
2. We all need accountability.
I am not just speaking to moral accountability although that is important. We also need to be held accountable for being a better spouse, a better parent, and a better friend. Iron sharpens iron, and we become dull without a community to hold us to our commitments. Spiritual willpower is overrated and weak.
3. Your family needs a model.
Just as Jesus modeled healthy community for his disciples, we are to model it for the people we influence and lead. Discipleship starts in the home. We are missing generations of disciples in the Church because parents never modeled it for their children. If you desire for your family to seek out healthy relationships in their lives, it starts with you.