Posts Tagged 'Fellowship'

Fellowship is Essential

JESUS SPEAKING

       “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them” (Mathew 18: 19-20.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

       The word ‘Amen,’ so commonly spoken at the end of most prayers, essentially means ‘I agree.’ Like so many Christian practices, prayer is meant to be exercised in community, as well as well as alone. No one can have a complete relationship with God until they share Him with others. When two or more gather together to celebrate Christ, his Spirit is made manifest in their hearts; those who are weak become strong and those who are empty are made full. An isolated Christian is a Christian who is weak and vulnerable to attack. To avoid fellowship with believers is to avoid fellowship with Christ himself.
       Some time ago, I regularly answered the prayer lines at my local church. After gaining a lot of experience, I was able to make some profound observations. Those who were not involved in a church fellowship, or a small group bible study, suffered great difficulties. Many isolators were addicted to drugs or struggling with some other terrible sin; nearly every detached person was stuck in a continual state of crisis. On the contrary, those who expressed a spirit of joy were actively involved in service work; they usually attended a small group fellowship; and they maintained close friendships with other believers.
       Are you involved in fellowship today? Do you have close Christian friends that you regularly pray with? Is your experience with Christ exercised in community, or in isolation? If you are not plugged into the body of Christ, go down to your church and ask them about weekly fellowships you might attend. They usually have lists, and you can always find one that fits your schedule. Make friends with other believers and pray with them regularly; become a part of God’s family and be renewed by the Holy Spirit. Without fellowship, you will never know the fullness of God’s power in your life.
       “Lord heavenly Father, we come before You and ask that You help us to be members of Your body. We desire to share You with others, and to be in fellowship with our eternal brothers and sisters. May we draw near to one another as we all draw near to You. May Your Spirit flow freely between us. If we have isolated, give us opportunities to fellowship with others and to grow strong. We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name. Amen.” God bless all of you!

Embrace fellowship

 

JESUS SPEAKING

                “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.  For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them” (Mathew 18: 19-20.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

                The word ‘Amen,’ so commonly spoken at the end of most prayers, essentially means ‘I agree.’  ‘Amen’ is an expression used when two people have finished praying together.  Like so many Christian practices, prayer is meant to be exercised in community (as well as alone.)  No one can have a full relationship with God until they share Him with others.  When two or more gather together to celebrate Christ his Spirit is made manifest in the heart of every believer; those who are weak become strong; doubt is replaced by faith; the empty are made full, and every weary soul becomes glad.  An isolated Christian is a Christian who is weak and vulnerable to attack.  To avoid fellowship with believers is to avoid fellowship with Christ himself.      

                I have been answering prayer lines at my church for nearly two years.  Over that period of time I have been able to make some profound observations.  Those who are not involved in a church fellowship, or a small group bible study, suffer great difficulties.  Many isolators are doing drugs and struggling with grievous sins; nearly all who remain detached are in some kind of continual crisis.  On the contrary, those who express a spirit of joy are actively involved in service work; they usually attend a small group fellowship; most have made close friendships with other believers; and nearly all of them intimately share God with those who call Jesus their Lord.

                Are you involved in a fellowship today?  Do you have close Christian friends that you pray with regularly?  Is your experience with Christ exercised in community, or in isolation?  If you are not plugged in to the body of Christ, go down to your church and ask them about weekly fellowships you might attend.  They usually have lists, and you can always find one that fits your schedule.  Make friends with other believers, and pray with them daily; become a part of God’s family and be renewed by the Holy Spirit.  Without fellowship, you will never know the fullness of God’s power in your life.

                “Lord heavenly Father we come before You and ask that You help us to be members of Your body.  We desire to share You with others, and to be in fellowship with our eternal brothers and sisters.  May we draw near to one another as we all draw near to You.  May Your Spirit flow freely between us.  If we have isolated, give us opportunities to fellowship with others and to grow strong.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, in Jesus Christ’s name.  Amen.”  God bless all of you.

Fellowship

JESUS SPEAKING

            “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.  For wherever two or three are gathered together in my name, there I will be in the midst of them” (Mathew 18: 19 – 20.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

            When two or more gather together in the name of Jesus Christ a powerful bond is formed between the creator and His creations; a bond that allows mankind to more fully commune with the living God.  Genuine Christianity can never be practiced in complete solitude.  Rather, the greatest expressions of faith can only be realized when believers gather together to love God and to love one another.  Without regular fellowship, it is nearly impossible to grow in our relationship with Jesus Christ.

            A portion of my week is devoted to answering the prayer lines at my local church (a ministry I have been involved in for years.)  Although there are many faithful callers, there are many more who are unhappy, unsatisfied, disturbed, or emotionally unstable; some of whom are stuck in addictions and are in bondage to various sins.  I often ask them, “Where are you fellow-shipping?”  Some common responses are, “I used to fellowship at such and such a place but I don’t anymore;” or “I no longer fellowship because everywhere I go people turn against me;” and finally, “I don’t need to fellowship because I have my own relationship with God.”  I often remind them that faith is meant to be shared, and that no one can practice Christianity unless they are regularly fellow-shipping with others believers.  Some callers get upset and become hostile.  Others wisely consider making the necessary adjustments and their lives are changed for the better.

            Weekly, if not daily fellowship is an expression of genuine faith.  Those who desire to grow closer to God must also grow closer to their brothers and sisters in Christ.  We can remain in communication with other believers through social media, phone calls, and text messages.  We can pray for and encourage one another.  We can frequent weekly services and take communion.  We can attend small group bible studies and other church functions.  By loving our fellow Christians we will know the fullness of God’s love; as we draw near to Him and to others, our minds will know peace, and our hearts will be filled with joy.

            “Lord Heavenly Father we strongly desire to fellowship with other believers.  As we draw nearer to one another may we draw nearer to You.  Provide us with opportunities to commune with the other members of Your body; may our actions always be loving and may we never fail to encourage our eternal brothers and sisters.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things in Jesus Christ’s name.  Amen.”  God bless all of you.

True Fellowship

JESUS SPEAKING

                Then he said to him, “A certain man gave a great supper and invited many, and sent his servant at supper time to say to those who were invited, ‘Come, for all things are now ready.’  But they all with one accord began to make excuses.  The first said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of ground, and I must go and see it.  I ask you to have me excused.’  And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to test them.  I ask you to have me excused.’  Still another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’  So that servant came and reported these things to his master.  Then the master of the house, being angry, sad to his servant, ‘Go out quickly in to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’  And the servant said, ‘Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is room.’  Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.  For I say to you that none of those men who were invited shall taste my supper’” (Luke Chapter 14: 16 – 24.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS   

                In this parable the man hosting the feast represents God.  The servant sent out to invite others to join in fellowship is Jesus Christ; and the great supper represents God’s eternal kingdom and the body of Christ as a whole.  Many who heard the Lord speak received the message, and with it salvation.  Most however rejected the gospel; inventing any number of excuses that would enable them to continue pursuing worldly pleasures.

                Some time ago I got involved in a weekly fellowship through a local church.  The church was filled with people who appeared to be affluent and well educated.  After a short time, it became clear that many were not fully committed to the group, let alone to God Himself.  They enjoyed drinking and frequenting bars and clubs; many did not see fornication as an act of extreme evil either.  Not surprisingly, every week we would hear a list of excuses as to why these individuals would not be able to attend the bible study.  One girl often missed group because her favorite basketball team played on Thursday nights.  Unfortunately many do not take their relationship with God seriously (or they deny it entirely.)  Some will come up with any excuse to avoid fellowship, bible reading, and service work.

                Today, the message is still being preached.  God continues to invite the masses to join Him in fellowship.  Those who heed the call integrate themselves into the body of Christ and begin to serve and love others.  Get involved at your local church and abandon the excuses and worldly pleasures that separate you from your fellows.  Attend a bible study, and get to know your true brothers and sisters.  Build friendships with other believers and read the bible.  If you obey the Lord’s commands and love unconditionally, then you will have entered in to God’s kingdom, and you will live forever in His presence.

                “Lord Heavenly Father, we desire to know You and to love You.  If we have not fully accepted your message then may we eagerly receive it today.  May we enter Your eternal kingdom and may we hunger for genuine fellowship with other believers.  Eliminate our excuses that we might serve our brothers and sisters in love.  We love You Father, we praise You and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things in Jesus Christ’s name.  Amen.” God bless all of you.


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