A friend of mine lives in a neighborhood that has a lot of young kids and neighborhood schools so many of the people know each other. While I was there visiting, I saw moms out on the sidewalk talking while their kids were playing outside.
They were comparing notes and communicating: “My daughter is having trouble with X. What are you doing to you’re your kids deal with that?” “Your son fell down on my sidewalk and I bandaged up his scrape– he’s fine now.” “I just found out our kids left a mess while they were playing in my basement. When can your daughter come back to help clean up? I want to teach them responsibility.”
This dynamic reminded me of what it’s like to be on mission together in the community– you how can be invested in one another, share responsibility for one another, communicate when they’re something wrong, help each other work on developmental issues. “Here’s what we’re working on.” “Do you have any input on that?” “What are you working on?” “How can I help you with that?”
It can work in missional community the same way it works with families in a tightly knit neighborhood. In both cases, it’s living life together– toward a common mission.