The second stage of the process in Acts 2:41-47 is belonging. The passage continues, “Now all the believers were together and had everything in common. So they sold their possessions and property and distributed the proceeds to all, as anyone had a need. And every day they devoted themselves to meeting together in the Temple complex, and broke bread from house to house” (Acts 2:44-46, HCSB).
Look at this passage and observe the references to unity. As they grew in faith, they grew in their sense of belonging. They belonged to one another in community, and placed the needs of others above their own. A lot of ink has been spilled over the nature of their sharing. Some have gone as far as to call it socialism or communism. But those kinds of theological gymnastics are of little help. I think at the baseline of the matter is that these early believers valued one another more than their own stuff. There was a oneness in this new society that was larger than material possessions. When one member had a need, someone stepped up to meet it. I think that our sense of belonging and community here in 21st century America is colored by the lenses of capitalism and the American dream. While Americans tend to be generous, it is my observation that our giving is often measured. Maybe our strange attachment to stuff and our obsession to create our own financial security is one of the reasons that the greatest Kingdom work in the world today is happening in impoverished countries instead of modernized ones. Just a thought.