Welcome to Part 5 of this Stay Focused Series.
Part 1 was about the importance of staying focused.
Part 2, I shared a testimony of a miracle we experienced because we stayed focused.
Part 3 was the 1st of 4 keys to the “HOW” we stay focused, did you read Stay in the Word?!
Part 4 was Stay in Faith!
K, not that kind of “the Fellowship”!
I just wanted to make sure I had your full attention. Although you could learn a lot from that movie about loyalty, commitment, service and friendship! 🙂
My point today is that you’ve got to stay linked up!
The devil is looking for a position of advantage (over us), to cut you off from headquarters, to keep you separated and distracted. Satan wants to get you so distracted so that you can’t hear the voice of God clearly. Don’t let him win!
God has created you to have a relationship with Him through His Son, with the Holy Spirit AND with believing believers. In this post, I’m going to focus on the later portion of that sentence.
Staying in Fellowship with Believing believers!
Those are the kind of people who will help build your Faith! You should be in a Church that challenges you to change (in a good way), that stretches you so that you can change, grow, increase… mature! Don’t worry, none of us have “arrived.” It should be a place where your wrinkles can get sanded out… where “Iron sharpens Iron” Prov. 27:17. Sometimes that means being in a place where you can learn to confront and overcome conflict!
Surround yourself with people who will build you up, encourage you, celebrate with you – not tear you down or prevent you from growing in God. 1 Corinthians 15:33, “Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”
If a person remains, “as an Island unto themselves”, they will never have to face up to the spiritual immaturity within them. A sign of a spiritually mature person (this has nothing to do with age or how long you’ve been a Christian either) is that they can be loving and patient with ANYONE and they can HUMBLY submit themselves to truth and to the correction of authority.
If we’re going to continue to move forward spiritually and be who God wants us to be, we need to take hold of one another in caring, supportive, biblical friendship. Koinonia kind of relationship – that word is all throughout the Bible, it means “fellowship” but it’s also an action word, meaning “contribution,” “sharing,” and “participation.” Fellowship, you see, is not just being together, it is doing together!
Acts 2:42, “And they steadfastly persevered, devoting themselves constantly to the instruction and fellowship of the apostles (the life together), to the breaking of bread [including the Lord’s Supper] and prayers.”
1 John 1:6-7, “[So] if we say we are partakers together and enjoy fellowship with Him when we live and move and are walking about in darkness, we are [both] speaking falsely and do not live and practice the Truth [which the Gospel presents].
But if we [really] are living and walking in the Light, as He [Himself] is in the Light, we have [true, unbroken] fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses (removes) us from all sin and guilt [keeps us cleansed from sin in all its forms and manifestations].”
Church-hoppers, bench-warmers and spectators all have something in common, they all think the church can make it without them. However, 1 Corinthians 12 makes it clear that every single member of the body is necessary for its proper functioning. Because of the importance of fellowship, no one has the right to amputate themselves from the functioning body of Christ, the local church.
I posted a great article on The Need for Relationships on our church blog. We know we are in covenantal relationship when we push through things like; trials + testing, transition, challenges, offense, impatience with one another and more… check out the post to read more about it. Covenant removes weakness and exchanges it for strength!
Another great article: What are you in the House of God? In the House there will be many different people at many different stages of life as is represented in a family but eventually we must grow up. God wants us to mature ~ always moving forward ~ one step at a time.
Fellowship is God’s way of accomplishing His plan of glorifying Jesus.
Stay tuned for part 5b… Stay in Fellowship With God!