Relationship or Fellowship

The church I have been attending has been doing a series on 1 John called Walking in the Light.  It’s been a great series. Here are some thoughts from the teachings and teaching points.
 
What is the ultimate cause of the church?

God’s greatest cause is His Glory (His reputation) which is revealed through Christ.  We exist to bring God Glory. We also glorify God when we fellowship with His Body (other believers).

Fellowship or Relationship?

Relationship is different from fellowship. A person can have a child and be related to them, but have no fellowship with that child. We can be related to one another in the body of Christ by His Spirit and have no fellowship with each other.

What is Fellowship: Fellowship involves trust, intimacy, transparency (no masks or pretense), vulnerability, investment, common purpose, communion, submission, looking out for another person’s best interests, speaking the truth, correction and rebuking, edification, encouragement, and affirmation, and helping another person become more like Christ, mourning with those who mourn, and rejoicing with those who rejoice. Fellowship often involves covenant commitment. Fellowship involves mutual serving. Fellowship is a heart to heart connection, not just a face to face connection.

Fellowship has a purpose and is not a aimless activity. 

Many will claim relationship or being related to God who have no fellowship with Him.  We claim fellowship with one another in Christ, but are we simply relating and having aimless relationships and not fellowship?

Christian love is the act of serving each other and helping each other to become more like Christ. The purpose of Christian discipleship is intentional time spent to point each other back to the gospel. What does God’s word say? What is God speaking? Are we pointing people to Jesus, helping them become all that they can for Him, or are we simply spending time? Are we watching a person self destruct to for fear of man, or are we willing to tell a person that God’s plan is so much better? The pastor told the story of having spinach in his teeth. He said a person who loves you will tell you that your teeth are filled with spinach. They won’t let you walk around with gunk in your teeth. The same goes for us. If we can watch each other suffer, hurt, sin, and not help, we are guilty of not walking in love.

Summary:

I believe there is tremendous fruit when the purpose for being with someone is known, when the vision is shared, when there is a heart to heart connection, when the common purpose is glorifying God. I believe that fellowship was and is God’s design, not relationships as we have them. I believe God meant for us to do life together and point each other to Him. I believe He intended for us to serve one another continually, not just be served.  I believe that a church built on mutual love, service, accountability, unity, common purpose, and Jesus centered relationships will change the world. I believe we can change the world if we continue to ask the questions, “

How can I help this person be more like Jesus? How can I encourage this person to be more like Jesus? How can I pray for this person to be more like Jesus? Who does God want my heart connected to? Who does God want me to invest in for the Kingdom? Where and with whom should I spend my time serving? Is God being glorified by my relationships and how I spend time?”

 

Abba I pray that You would bring believers into our lives that we can grow with. Partner us up with others to have heart to heart connections and not just face to face encounters. Send people our way who will continually point to You and encourage us to be more like You. Send us people who will love as You love, speak as You speak, and those who help fulfill Your purposes for our lives. Help us to have God centered fellowship. Help us to use our time to be the most impactful for the Kingdom. Use us and spend us like Your spare change. Keep the focus on what You want to do in and though us. Help us to serve. Help us to love. Help us to disciple each other and the nations. Thanks for all You’ve done. Amen.

 

Have a wonderful week. You are deeply loved.