It's funny how often the friends that you need in certain seasons tend to show up. Although I know that's not all of our stories, because there's been many seasons of hard times in my life that no one showed up.
Seth was a friend that came into my life right after I left the machine (aka institutional mega-church). We've both had a lot of institutional detoxing to do over the years, and it was nice to do it together. Seth was also an elder with an Acts 29 Network church, yes the Network that Mars Hill Church started.
He was drawn to this church family because at the beginning they really wanted to live out being the church as we see in the scriptures. Within communities of love and service, not with big liturgies, rock concerts, and programs. But that only lasted so long as the pressures of building an institution in America often do.
He transferred from eldership to move to Phoenix because he wanted to continue to progress in the values of being the church not going to church, but the institution desired otherwise and moving on was inevitable.
The institution of things often take over the heart of things and when that happens people have to move on. This is not to say that everyone in the institution is bad or evil or silent. Many helped him in the transition and treated him as family. But unfortunately, others did not.
So, when your forced to move on from what you thought was family because the machine wants to institutionalize not communalize you're left with our conversation. Maybe we should start having these conversations before we are kicked out or have to move on.