We were about halfway through the Alpha Course. As discussion leaders, we had gotten to know those in our small group quite well over the six weeks we had been meeting together. One of the people in our group was very skeptical about Christianity. I wasn’t sure why she kept coming, but I was glad that she persisted. As we were talking about the church that night, this woman looked around the group at each group member and said, “If church was like this, I might consider it.”
This one statement about the importance of community and open dialogue spurred me on to grow deeper in my understanding of the church. I studied and preached through the book of Acts. I was struck by the deep sense of community that the early Christians experienced (e.g. Acts 2:42-47). I read numerous books on the church. I came to realize that a healthy church is a loving, Christ-centred community on a mission to be and make growing disciples of Jesus. This vision of the church led me into a church planting ministry for several years and continues to burn in my heart as I serve as co-moderator at South Langley Church and teach students at MBBS-ACTS Seminaries at Trinity Western University. I want to do all that I can to make this vision a reality in my church and in the churches of those I have the privilege to train because I strongly believe that the church can be “like this” and so much more.