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 ESV
I suffer from idolatry. This is the first time that I am admitting this to anyone. I have come to realize that I have been so wrapped up in what I have perceived as self-doubt and poor self-worth that I have lost sight of the truth. If I am created in the image of God then I must be beyond beautiful. I am like those stars Paul speaks of in Philippians. I can shine so bright in the darkness because I reflect the Lord’s face. I can never be in darkness.
What beautiful thoughts. This is a refreshing process, a sparkling outlook after a lifetime wading through oceans of excuses because my reflection was lying to me. The darkness was taking my beauty and twisting in the ugly.
I needed to let go and see truth.
As I walk away from this messed up view of the Lord’s most special creation I look back on all the times I used these doubts and lack of worth as excuses to not be submerged in a church family. I teetered on the outskirts of friendships and fellowship because I thought I was less than those contented faces scattered across potlucks and happy gatherings.
I had a time when I embraced an attitude of isolation making excuses to avoid the fellowship of believers. Friendships mattered a great deal, but I felt like I just couldn’t cut it in faith knowledge or life experience. The thinking I embraced was that I would be looked at as second class believer among the wise.
I wasted so many years living with these perceptions and I find myself playing a lot of catch-up.
Walking into our church home, my family is greeted, loved on, acknowledged and built-up despite my tendencies to shy away and stay plastered to a faux-leather chair in the sanctuary.
Having a spirit-nurtured heart and a constant search for faith knowledge, I find myself no longer wanting to be just a listening ear for two hours on a Sunday. I am needing to participate, facilitate, lead, and grow with my brothers and sisters,
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. James 1:17 ESV
Needing help on occasions, I no longer grimace when a loving hand reaches out to our longing hearts. I graciously and humbly accept the tools and love that the Lord offers through His children who have become my family.
The gift of fellowship among believers took time to become an important aspect of my faith, but the Lord shows the need to not walk this path alone.
He wants to nurture the hearts of each of his children. Until I accepted this gift, I never knew I had the heart to serve through discipleship.
Now I am thinking about some of these attitudes and feel God just pouring down His grace and faithfulness. I want to pour those things back on those who have come alongside me all the times I thought I could go at it alone. I know it’s possible and I believe it will come in time.
The Lord has truly been faithful to me and my family. I turn it all back to Him in hopes of furthering His kingdom.
You are invited to hear other sisters from Telling Hearts, speak on FELLOWSHIP:
Jerusha Borden shares insight into the realities of church fellowship, and also inspires us to take the time to get to know, and see the good in each person’s story:Fellowship Series: Life Group Changes Everything, Stories
Stacey Wells is an encouragement and consoles us as she shares humbly about her own journey to find Christian fellowship and keep her focus on God and family first, after a very long rough road of learning:When Fellowship is a Journey, I Had to Lay My Isaac Down
Rosie Williams beautifully explains the logic and purpose of fellowship to help you realize its precious value :Life is a journey…don’t travel alone.
Tammy SD summarizes the definition, and speaks to being persistent to the pursuit of GOOD and WONDERFUL fellowship:Good Fellowship vs. Mediocre or Bad Introduction to Telling Hearts Fellowship Series, 6/2018