In an old episode of Seinfeld, Jerry said something like this:
“When you’re in your thirties it’s very hard to make a new friend. Whatever the group is that you’ve got now that’s who you’re going with, you’re not interviewing, you’re not looking at any new people, you’re not interested in seeing any applications. They don’t know the places … They don’t know the activities. If I meet a guy in a club or the gym, I’ll tell him, ‘I’m sure you’re a very nice person, you seem to have a lot of potential, but we’re just not hiring right now.’
“Of course when you’re a kid, you can be friends with anybody. Remember when you were a little kid? What were the qualifications [for becoming friends]? If someone’s in front of my house right NOW, that person is my friend. That’s it. Are you a grownup? No. Great! Come on in. Jump up and down on my bed. And if you have anything in common at all—‘You like Cherry Soda? I like Cherry Soda’—we’ll be best friends!”
Part of what made the early church so radical was that it brought together people of different races and social and economic strata who would never have come together otherwise.
There’s a movement today of people moving back into urban centers in order to experience the kind of community that the city has to offer. By its very nature, the church is equipped to meet peoples’ deepest needs for belonging.
The great advantage of being a city center church is that the church is one of the few places where you regularly see four generations coming together at once. You don’t need to fill out an application; there’s room here for everyone.