It’s a weeknight. You walk through the doors of a restaurant and scan the room. You spot a couple of your friends claiming a table in the corner. They greet you enthusiastically with a hug and a smile. You’re introduced to a new couple you haven’t seen before. You make small talk with them and greet the others who join you.

Coffees in hand and appetizers on the table, the conversation gets more open and relaxed. Then it goes deeper. You get a little vulnerable. You open up. You share your weaknesses and your struggles, but also your strivings.

When you’ve finished baring your soul, you look back at the other faces sitting around the table, nodding in agreement. You’ve revealed yourself, but you haven’t been judged. Other people do the same. It’s beautiful.

The restaurant is closing and the night is coming to an end. You exchange hugs and numbers with a couple of the new people you’ve bonded with. You leave feeling deeply satisfied and looking forward to the next chance you get to spend with them.

The picture above is a beautiful example of what community looks like. This is the church. It’s not a building. It’s a community. God designed us to engage with others, and not to do life alone. Aside from God designing us with this intrinsic need, there are other practical reasons why we should be intentional about finding our tribe and getting plugged into a community.

1. COMMUNITY MAKES YOU ACCOUNTABLE

Whoever isolates himself seeks his own desire; he breaks out against all sound judgment. – Proverbs 18:1

It’s a lot easier to make bad decisions when you think no one is watching. In isolation, or when you’ve surrounded yourself with the wrong kinds of people, no one challenges your decisions or encourages you to make better ones.

When you’ve surrounded yourself with a positive, loving community, you begin to thrive in all areas of your life. There will always be someone to encourage you to do better, to offer help, or to love on you.