When Christ in you connects with Christ in me, an instant sense of kinship happens, even if we’re strangers. When we sense that connection, we tend to open our hearts to each other and begin to actively experience our unity in Jesus. It’s no longer a theory or an empty theological point. It’s real and joyous!
Christianity has been routinized so that too often we assemble as if in a classroom, merely to sit together and be taught (or retaught) Christianity 101 as if it were a religious curriculum instead of a supernatural lifestyle. By doing so, we miss out on “the unity of the Spirit” and “the bond of peace.” Early Christians seem to have met without a steadfast routine, trusting in the active presence and leadership of the Spirit to guide and direct the meetings. In fact, Romans 8:14 says that being led by the Spirit is characteristic of the children of God.
When “bands” or “cell groups” or “house churches” meet to surrender to the leading of the Holy Spirit by allowing each person to obey the prompting of the Holy Spirit, an amazing thing happens. One after another (see 1 Corinthians 14:26) people begin to say and do what the Spirit tells them to, and it soon becomes obvious that a supernatural presence is directing the meeting. Suddenly everyone knows that the living Jesus is in the house. I’ve been in that kind of meeting hundreds of times, and they always fill me with a sense of awe and amazement at the demonstration of the reality of the presence of the risen Jesus through ordinary people.
Church organization, programming, and formalities are frequently barriers that prevent the movement of the Holy Spirit. The programmed predictability of church squashes the spontaneity of the Holy Spirit. Perhaps salvation testimonies are rarely heard in churches because, so few members have a salvation testimony to give. Any free-flowing movement of God’s Spirit tends to be seen as a threat to churches, so they usually react by trying to shut it down.
Routinized Christianity has always been boring to me. Many Christians feel restricted and trapped by church programs and religious hierarchies. Programmed church services contain many barriers to the free movement of the Holy Spirit.
The purpose of Christians gathering isn’t to hear a sermon or to engage in rituals, but to encounter and obey the risen Jesus. Spirit-led small groups can help us do that.
And clip their wings
So they sit
Rather than fly.