The truth about fellowship is that we need it.
Many times I have convinced myself that gathering with others is not necessary. That was definitely not true. My tendency, as I am sure it is with many of you, is to go inward, especially when struggling with sin or just struggling in general. This is really the worst thing we can do. We should be seeking wise counsel.
“for by wise guidance you can wage your war, and in abundance of counselors there is victory.”-Proverbs 24:6
Not to mention, our hearts are wicked and deceitful, we should not solely rely on our own opinions and thoughts.
“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?”-Jeremiah 17:9
“For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”-Matthew 7:21-23
Personally I enjoy solitude. If you’re like me (a person who enjoys time alone), then you’re the type of person who is is not the type to go out looking for friendship, and has to try hard to be social. Making time for fellowship is a challenge for us. Solitude is not bad. It’s a great gift. Something I wish that I had more time for.
The fall women’s bible study at my church was a study on The Armor Of God, by Priscilla Shirer. The study was full of some rich reminders, however this was not the best thing about it. The most beneficial thing that came from this study was time spent with other believers. There were many weeks when I had no time to complete the homework, but just being there and being able to “glean” was such a fruitful thing. This was the first bible study that I finished all the way through (seven weeks)! I usually have difficulty finishing what I begin. God is still refining me. I was the youngest woman in my group, yet all of us were married. I ended up being in the same group as my “mama”/spiritual mentor.
This mama of mine and I met early on in my Christian life. We met at our old church a bit over four years ago. She took me under her wing and taught me how to pray, prayed with me and for me, showed me what a marriage looks like biblically, and how to be a strong woman of God. She prayed for the man I would marry one day. She is someone who I look up to. She has been there for Max and I through good and really difficult times. We were at different churches for a while, but after much prayer and other life circumstances… her and her family made the move to our church. Their presence has been such a gift to so many. I am a huge beneficiary of this gift as I get to sit under her leadership and wisdom again. It’s strange how something as simple as not going to the same church as someone else can so greatly effect the frequency that you see a person.
Back to my original point…
Do not be deceived into thinking that life is best lived alone. Regardless of how busy, challenging, or tiring life gets. Make time to be with others.
During this time I was encouraged by the transparency and authenticity of the women at our table. We shared struggles, exchanged prayer requests, were able to share different interpretations of the study material, and prayed corporately.
“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.”-Romans 12:15
“For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”-Matthew 18:20
There is so much power in prayer alone, but how much more powerful are the prayers of many saints gathered together in agreement.
It was nice to be in a group of people that I did not get to choose to be in. It caused me to commune with people that I would not usually meet with. That’s not because of anything in them, because I usually stick to my circle of friends.
“not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”-Hebrews 10:25
Friendship is costly but it’s worth of the cost.