We are now moving onto the fifth of our Holy Habits topics and here is the introduction from the booklet:
“In Acts 2:44-45 and 4:32-37, Luke presents pictures of the early Christian communities of disciples supporting one another and those in need in the wider community by the generous sharing of their resources. They shared and sold possessions to create a common fund which could be used to support those in need of income or resources.
The fund may also have supported the apostles and, later on, the deacons and others.
It was a powerfully prophetic, counter-cultural expression of community then. It remains so today.
Much of 21st century Western culture encourages us to live separate, independent lives protecting our individuality, our privacy and our belongings. The same attitude is also becoming more prominent within the politics of nation states.
In Acts 2:44 we hear that the disciples were together and had ‘all things in common’.
As you explore this habit of Sharing Resources, you may like to reflect on what having all things in common meant to those early Christians, and how we relate that to our lives today personally and collectively in holy living.
This is a particularly challenging habit. It is not about offering others what you can spare. Nor is it about taking from others what you fancy. To share something requires us to change our relationship with that item, perhaps relinquishing our power over it, or taking more account of how we use it.
Sharing roles or gifts may mean accepting that a task is not completed to your own exacted standard. Sharing ideas or thoughts may make you vulnerable. True sharing is about working together in an open, honest and thoughtful manner without any hidden agendas.
Sharing can be costly and demanding but it is a way to life-giving and transformational experience.”
Andrew Roberts (ed) et al, Holy Habits. Sharing Resources, pg. 6