Why is a community with others so important to us? Why is the pain of loneliness so unbearable? To answer this I need to share the time in my life when I first understood what community was and what it meant. When my first friend saved me from the depths of darkness despite my constant rejection of Him, the one who never stopped loving me despite how deeply my hatred for Him grew and the one who taught me who empathy and love are. The day I accepted Jesus as my savior and friend, my community, after many years of convincing myself that I didn’t need or want community.
Community isn’t just knowing of other people, the community is about being able to truly empathize and understand other people, to share your pain, your happiness, your despair, your joy and your passion with one another and grow as individuals and as a group. Community is something that has been vital to us since day one of our race’s existence. When God created Adam he was completely sinless and perfect and yet something was still missing, he had no one to share the happiness of the things God had given him with, despite being in literal paradise it wasn’t complete without the ability to share the depths of himself with another. Even in complete perfection, Adam could still feel the sting of loneliness. So God created Eve and only after that was Adam completely fulfilled in every way.
No matter how much we try to convince ourselves otherwise, we NEED people who can share in our joys and our pains, we need people we can rely on to steer us back on the right path when we stray from what’s good. God did not create man to be alone and no amount of trying to convince ourselves otherwise will change that. To say that we need no one to correct us, to connect with us, to bear our burdens with us is to put ourselves on the same pedestal as God himself and as we’ve seen in the past, those who do that get knocked down hard.
In this way, accepting a community is also a sign of being humble, to accept that you have limits and cannot do everything on your own. A community between us is the last prayer Jesus prayed before his trial and crucifixion began. The desire for community is something we simply can’t truly do way with no matter how deep we bury it. Community with others is what will keep us from destroying ourselves and it’s what will bring some semblance of peace to the world.
Find a community and if all other communities reject you, create one!