as the flock, we have no flocking concept
And yet we have years of division and strife. We have fractured community. Some spend more time attracting other Christians to church from existing church relationships than attracting those in serious need. We are more adept at apologetics than we are at meeting needs and being community. Many of us know the arguments regarding our chosen version of salvation theory better than we know how the addiction process works in our own lives. We have to form small groups and have an agenda before we'll hang out with each other.
What went wrong???!! Where did we divert so far from the Gospel? When did Jesus become an American caucasian, stuck in first century middle east? When did we start looking at verses versus looking at context? When did the Bible become an indexed reference book rather than a collection of stories to introduce God? How many times did Jesus toss a verse to someone compared to the number of times He related a story to them?
I've been exploring the emergent church, and have some hope that the paradigm of contention might be over… the we all believe that Truth exists, but that our experience and background changes how we see the Truth, and that our Truth is truth trying to be Truth. I see real hope, and I see more love than I've ever seen.
Few people can be argued into real relationship, but many are attracted by acceptance and love. I've yet to meet anyone comdemned into right relationship with God... maybe that's why Jesus was so hard on those who condemn.
Like the AAers say, "attraction, not promotion."