Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
How can we have fellowship with God? We know that we’re called to fellowship and that it’s spiritual in nature, but how do we arrive at that kind of relationship with God? There are two major means by which we can really fellowship with Him. One is His way of speaking to us and the the other is our way of speaking to Him.
God chose to reveal Himself to us through Jesus, the image of the invisible God (Colossians 1:15). His Word became flesh in the person of Christ (John 1:14) and since we don’t live in the time when Jesus walked the earth, what we have is the written Word of God. This is the inspired, God-breathed, revelation of the Lord to mankind. He speaks to us by means of the Scriptures. If we want to hear from Him, we don’t need to look for signs or perform rituals. We need to read.
Contained within the 66 books of the Bible are God’s answers to life’s questions, His outpouring of love, His story of redemption, His offer of forgiveness, His character and His will. Searching with the intent of knowing God more intimately will lead to deeper fellowship with Him as we hear Him.
1 John 1:3 that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.
What is fellowship? We often use this word in our Christian culture to speak of potluck dinners or home get-togethers, but what sets these things apart from any other gathering? What makes them Christian fellowship rather than just hanging out? The answer lies in one word: spiritual.
Whereas many people have social time and events where they interact with others, Christians are a part of fellowship because fellowship is spiritual. We connect with one another on a different level than those who just gather to have fun. We have a purpose behind our relationships and interactions with people that equate to fellowship.
In 1 John we read that those who had witnessed the earthly ministry of Christ were sharing their testimonies with others and therefore entering into fellowship with them. It’s through a relationship with Christ that this fellowship is able to happen. He is the center of it all, the core of our fellowship with God and with other people. It all hinges on Him and what He’s done. When we share Christ with others, we have fellowship, not just social time.
1 Corinthians 1:9 God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
We were called into fellowship with God. That is, God has initiated a relationship with us that is much deeper than we may expect. He’s not interested in a surface-level, once-a-week interaction with us. He wants more of us. He wants all of us.
Sometimes we get so caught up in the religion of it all and forget that God wants to connect with us on a spiritual level. He’s far less interested in whether or not we perform religious rituals than He is in whether or not our hearts are connected with His. He wants an intimacy with us that extends so far beyond the rituals.
How deep are you willing to go? How much of an effort are you willing to make? He initiated the fellowship, now we have to make a move to complete the transaction. We have to reach our hand out to His outstretched hand and grab on. But intimacy requires trust and honesty. God already knows what’s on our hearts, but true fellowship requires that we declare it to Him in total submission. It requires absolute faith, and for His part God is always faithful.
Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
Having the right friends can be a great benefit in life. They can challenge you mentally, support you emotionally, strengthen you spiritually, and otherwise just be there for you when you need them. It’s also important, though, to be a good friend as well.
We’re blessed through the friendship of others, but we’re sanctified by our friendship to them. Being on the giving end isn’t always the easy part of a relationship, but it’s the godly part. By showing interest in other people, we become more humble by thinking of ourselves less. By being a good listener we grow in wisdom. And by forgiving, we learn more about grace and the amazing gift God has given us in Christ.
We’ve all been given a unique opportunity to share Christ with others through our relationships with them. I can think of several friends I’ve had in my lifetime where I received little to nothing from them, but gave all I had. Those times could be tough, I’ll be honest. I did end up ending most of those friendships out of necessity, but I can’t say I didn’t benefit from those times I spent giving of myself, even when I knew I wouldn’t get anything in return. I didn’t know it back then, but I was learning to walk in the footsteps of Jesus. May I continue to grow spiritually through my relationships, and may you also.
Matthew 5:23-24 “So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19 And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to Himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to Him. 19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And He gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation.
Sometimes it seems so much easier to not fix a relationship than to face the issues and become right with that person, but God doesn’t care for the easy way of doing things, he went through a lot of great effort to make relationships right.
Through Jesus we have been shown the great lengths that God would go to in order to fix a relationship. He could have taken the easy way out and just wrote us off and let us self destruct.
The master of relationship repair made us right with him and we should be willing to go out of our way to fix the broken relationships that we have in our life. We are his representatives to the rest of the world so they will come to know the God of fixed relationships. He isn’t impersonal, he is relational, and he wants us to be the same.
Thank you Lord for making the relationship right between you and I. Help me to be busy showing people that relationships matter, especially the relationship with you that is possible only because of Jesus.
RECENT POST ON DIGGING THE WORD:
John 16:24 Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.
How do we connect with God? We hear from Him in the Bible, learn who He is and what His will is, and gain fellowship with Him. But what about our side of the conversation? How does God hear from us?
Prayer is our way of speaking to the Lord and a big part of fellowship with Him. We mainly pray in one of several fashions. Confession is where we own up to our sins before God and receive the forgiveness He’s given in Christ. Petition is the time to ask for our needs to be met (“Give us this day our daily bread”), while intercession is asking for the needs of others to be met. Thanksgiving and praise are vital to fellowship as well. Giving thanks to God for all He’s done puts our hearts in a humble place where we’re more capable of experiencing Him and praising Him.
Without prayer, fellowship with God falters because we can’t even carry on a human relationship without speaking to the other person, let alone a close relationship with the Creator of all things. We wants our attention, our time, our devotion. Talking the time to speak to God serves a key role in our spiritual well-being.