FUELED BY FELLOWSHIP

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Neal Pollard

There are occasions like family reunions, class reunions, church seminars, lectureships, and forums, and the like which allow us to see friends and loved ones sometimes for the first time in years.  There is a joy and rejuvenation of spirit which comes along with such being brought together again. The reunion may seem to come at just the time we feel we needed it, to aid us in coping with trouble, temptation, or trials. A kind word or warm greeting may by itself be enough to keep us moving forward.

This is a testimony to how God created us and how we need those human interactions to encourage and help us.  Without it, we can feel misunderstood, isolated, and dismayed. From the dawn of creation, God, who designed us, knew that “it is not good for the man to be alone” (Gen. 2:18).  We innately crave that togetherness and socialization without which we cannot hope to spiritually thrive.

The longer we are in Christ and growing in a relationship with Him, the less we may be compelled by a command to assemble.  There should be a yearning, based on what we see of Him and receive from Him, to want to praise and magnify Him in worship and learn more of Him through the study and preparation of a Bible class teacher.  The longer we are in the body of Christ and growing in our relationship with them, the less we are compelled by a command to assemble.  There should be a yearning, as we know our brothers and sisters better, to be reunited with them at every opportunity we are given!  If for no other reason, I would be opposed to “dropping services” because of what it would represent in my ongoing development of that vertical and that horizontal relationship.  I do not want to worship Him less often or see my church family less often!  I long for that fellowship.

This fellowship, which is modeled for us in the example of the early church (Acts 2:42-47), fuels me and so often helps me with what I seemed to need most that day.  This is not accidental, but by design.  God, who made us, knew we would need each other and that is why He created the church as He did—not perfect, not always easy or necessarily warm and fuzzy, but as a family.  We are not under the same roof, necessarily, but we are in the same family (1 Cor. 12:13).  God gives us fellowship with Him and each other to help us survive this life and to receive eternal life!  The question is, “Are we trying to do it alone or together?”

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