Every once in awhile, the Lord brings things to my attention that I feel must be expressed to some sort of audience. This is a note from my old Facebook that I felt compelled to bring back and repost. Fellowship...what is it?
Dictionary.com (oh ho ho, I'm official!!) defines 'fellowship' like this:
[fel-oh-ship] , verb, -shipped or -shiped, -ship·ping or -ship·ing.
the condition or relation of being a fellow: the fellowship ofhumankind.
friendly relationship; companionship: the fellowship of father and son.
community of interest, feeling, etc.
communion, as between members of the same church.
an association of persons having similar tastes, interests,etc.
a company, guild, or corporation.
the body of fellows in a college or university.
the position or emoluments of a fellow of a college oruniversity, or the sum of money he or she receives.
a foundation for the maintenance of a fellow in a collegeor university.
–verb (used with object)
to admit to fellowship, especially religious fellowship.
–verb (used without object)
to join in fellowship, especially religious fellowship.
Use fellowship in a Sentence
1150–1200; Middle English felaweshipe. See fellow, -ship
2. comradeship, camaraderie, friendship, society, intimacy.
What really catches me is the synonyms at the end, especially 'friendship' and 'intimacy'.
We, as Christians use the term 'fellowship' often...but do we TRULY think about what it means? Fellowship completes us in our faith...in Paul's first letter to the Corinthians, we have been told how God himself calls us to share fellowship with His Son. The grace we receive as Christians comes from our belief in the Truth and the fellowship we share. One of Paul’s huge messages, laid out in the New Testament, is that when we gather as Christians together, wonderful things happen.
That being said, I'm coming back to those synonyms...the thing that really caught me and brought me to write this. When you think of friendship...what do you think of? Often times, we call aquaintances 'friends', but when we truly mean it, we are talking about people we've had conversations with, at least more than once. And intimacy? When I think of intimacy, I think of closeness, a true bond.
In too many of the youth groups/college ministries/churches etc. I've gone to, I've run across the same problem that I've been noticing as of late:
I don't think that anyone but three or four people in each of these groups (of the, how many on average? Like...30?) could tell you how long I've been in a relationship with Christ, who I live with, what town I live in, what church I go to...
Is that the ground on which friendship stands upon? I think not! Now, don't take this note as anything for what it isn't, I am merely using myself as an example. I am not any higher or mightier than you because I'm actually saying something about it...because honestly, we're all guilty of pretty much the same stuff, when it all comes down to it.
I have heard the same feedback from others in every ministry I've ever been involved in, like my whole life...whether you realize it or not...
Honestly, I think THAT right there is the thing that needs to be going through your mind every time you approach your social situations, especially at Merge, Relevant, First Baptist, Dayton, Riverside, Crossroads, wherever you attend church and other ministries. You have no idea how much a simple conversation can really brighten a person's day, even someone you'd never think was lonely, and truly aid them in seeking the Lord. Maybe it sounds silly...but as a Christian (who is supposed to be reflecting Jesus, not that I always succeed), extending friendship to others can be the prime example of what they're seeking and what their looking for...because isn't Jesus our truest friend? :)
I encourage all of you to pray about this, no matter where you are from, what groups/church you attend...because this is important stuff!
I love you all, God BLESS you if you read this :)