To understand and reflect properly on the Church, one must engage in reflections about the activity of the God who ordained such an institution. What is his nature, what is he like, and what is he doing?
God likes to be called “Love”.
God is Relating Love. Therefore, the Church exists to relate, both to God and to each other. But not just relate, relate with and through the power of God’s love. This is what makes all the difference. This is the differentiation and the great claim it must stand on; that it’s by and for the Love of God it exists. The church honestly attempts to love God back with His love by loving those within the Church. The church is the space, the organization, the people that strives to relate to all things the way God relates to himself and his creation. So the foundation of church is God’s love and God’s ability to cooperate and relate, to give and take, to have Community.
The Triune God is a Tribal God!
The church, much like a child, desires to imitate the Father in all things. For the church to engage in activities such as providing care for the world, teaching great sound doctrine, offering space for sacred acts, but forego the conscious effort to build an environment and people adequate in loving one another, has then failed to be what it was designed by default to be and do. The church exists to be like God, to be Holy. He is holy because he relates differently. We are set apart (holy) from the way all else relates for the sake of relating the way God relates, via His Love.
Essentially, the Church is Love Relating.
Love is found only in the terrain of Relationships.