Community by Rebecca Seaton


Community 
by Rebecca Seaton

                                       
                                       Community Events: Last year's Steam and Cider Fair




We all need community - recent times have demonstrated this powerfully. 


God makes it clear in His word that community is important. For a start, He is Himself three unique parts which unite together. Who He is: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, demonstrates the importance of different roles operating in unity. He expects no less from us. When His word speaks of bringing His kingdom, it is as a community of believers acting together. What does this actually mean though? We know it doesn’t mean everyone being the same – there are many different types of Christian and even within one church, wildly different roles. At its simplest, a community is merely a group of people with something in common – a neighbourhood, a club, the X community. But when a group’s members operate together for a common good, then community is at its most powerful. Suddenly people don’t just live or work together, as if by accident, but have decided to act together.

What does this mean for you? Where do you find community? Where do you contribute towards community? What do your books say about community?


Where we find community is often practical: we all have to live somewhere, most of us have to work. We automatically fall in to a community. But even here, seeing this as God’s will is transformative. As a newly qualified teacher, I applied for everywhere except the south east for work, yet ended up in London. The people on my street come from very varied backgrounds and I’d guess many didn’t choose Dagenham as their dream location. However, despite many differences, we have formed a community. Even before Covid-19 struck, we knew each other’s names and had a lot of positive contact. Now we have shared food, done shopping, helped with gardening. Conversation has gone far beyond a polite ‘hello’. This is community.


Can you remember why you joined ACW? There is something unique about being both a community of Christians and a community of writers. Sometimes it’s easier to look at the experienced authors and focus on how much we can learn from them, and I’ve certainly benefited from others’ wisdom. But it’s also important to see where we can contribute. Perhaps someone would benefit from that poem you wrote or that thought you had. Maybe your observation on someone’s work could be just what they need to hear right now.

Sharing our work

Does your writing demonstrate the importance of community? The way your main characters operate in different groups can be a powerful demonstration of this. If your main character is suddenly isolated or moves to a different community, this can highlight what they gained and gave when in a close-knit group. Serving, after all, needs more than one.






Rebecca Seaton came second place in the 2017-18 Pen to Print Book Challenge with her first novel, A Silent Song. She is currently working on her next novel, also a YA fantasy.


#amwriting #amwritingfantasy #ACW #LoveWhereYouLive    

                                                                                                                                      

Comments

  1. So so timely Rebecca. I have been lying awake for an hour (as you will see if you note the time I'm posting this comment) and having started to realise there's a reason for it, I am now up. I need to write a blog which has been bouncing around in my brain ever since I lay down, shouting "Don't go to sleep!! Write about this!" Can I remember why I joined ACW? Yes I can, and I told the story this afternoon on Maressa's afternoon tea Zoom call. Right from the start, I've felt privileged to be in a group with such talented and generous people. So to all of you, thank you. And to you, Rebecca for putting into words what I've been thinking. Now on with the blog!

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  2. Yes, as Ruth already commented, why we joined ACW came up in yesterday's Zoom afternoon tea. I didn't have a chance to say anything as the conversation had moved on. Actually the reason I joined came out of community. For years I had been aware of ACW from adverts in a bookshop, but it was a personal invitation (strong persuasion) which led me to join. Another member had become a good friend through a Ladies Bible study group. Now I am part of several communities within ACW - a local group and online groups. It is always good to meet with other members, even if we can only do this remotely. Without ACW I perhaps would not be writing!

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    1. That gave me quite a jolt, Susan. Imagine if you weren't writing - ACW is a wonderful thing.

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  3. So true. Community is so important and ACW is so positive and encouraging. Many of us are experiencing the power of the whole community thing on a new level since, Lockdown. Great Post, Rebecca.

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  4. Thanks, glad this resonated. I remember being really nervous going to my first local ACW meeting but it was very near where I live so I couldn't say no! Very glad I went.

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  5. I'm learning the value of community more and more. It takes some humility, though, to accept the help of others and not plough on independently yelling 'I'll be fine!' into the wind.

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  6. if a church isn't a community, it isn't really a church - it's something we need eventually to get back to - but we can also have it now, via zoom etc - as community is a strong part of what church is - read Acts, and read Paula Gooder's Phoebe - wherever christians are, sharing is important! A community shares, supports, gives, cares, accepts, learns, and also laughs together. Thanks for this Ruth.

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