40 Days of Discipline

40 Days of Discipline: Day 24 – Fellowship

10 Comments

Be devoted to one another in love.  Honor one another above yourselves.  Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.  Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.  Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.  Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.  Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.  Live in harmony with one another.  Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.  Do not be conceited. (Romans 12:10-16)

Yesterday we considered the foundation of Fellowship.  Today we will explore what fellowship might look like.   The Romans 12 passage above paints a picture of what fellowship can look like.  Please prayerfully read the passage and answer the questions below.

Today’s Questions for comments:

  •  Is the description of fellowship in the passage reflective of Christian fellowship as you experience it?
  • What are some things we can do to encourage more of this kind of fellowship in our churches?

10 thoughts on “40 Days of Discipline: Day 24 – Fellowship

  1. Is the description of fellowship in the passage reflective of Christian fellowship as you experience it?
    Unfortunately not. What I ahve been experiencing is what I would describe as instances of some of what is described in our passage instead of sustained episodes.
    What are some things we can do to encourage more of this kind of fellowship in our churches? Enco

  2. Cont’d

    What are some things we can do to encourage more of this kind of fellowship in our churches?
    Encouraging this kind of fellowship requires more believers who desire and are willing to commit to living in obedience to what’s described in our passage doing so with the spiritual fervor mentioned above. We are called to encourage each other for good, which includes the area of fellowship. The expectation described in the passage will only be met as we walk in the Spirit as this manner of living requires humility, looking out for the interest of others above ourselves, etc, which are qualities which are of our old nature, which without being restrained by the Spirit, is very eager to show it’s ugly self. I must become, by the grace of God, what I hope to encourage others to become. Let us begin to encourage this kind of living by prayerfully engaging with others, one person at a time.

  3. I’m still sick and recovering from bronchitis. I’m sorry I’m just reading all the comments and topics but not sharing anything as I have been sick for the past 3 weeks. I feel very weak from coughing too much. I must say I am so blessed to experience fellowship with all of you in this way. I’m in Japan and others are in different parts of the world, but here we are studying together, and learning God’s word, and even encouraging, praying for one another each in our own quiet time. What a fellowship we have! Your comments and insights are indeed very helpful to me, especially I am just staying at home now and was told by my doctor to slow down if I really want to be healed. Thank you everyone!

    • Thank you Aurora, for sharing from your heart and pointing out the fellowship that we are indeed sharing and enjoying. We do pray for the healing touch of Jehovah Rapha to be upon you today.

  4. I have to say that when I read the verses with the first question in mind, Westside came immediately to mind, and throughout, especially the Small Group fellowship that we enjoyed during our time there. Thank you Westside for that. And I hope that you are continuing to invest in such ways. The returns are many fold.
    How do we foster more? Being in church leadership here in England, it is not a remote question. The challenges are many – schedules, logistics, hardened hearts, etc. – but this is a useful reminder, of the goal and its importance, and of the need to make opportunities for people to get together and connect intimately.
    I look forward to the comments! 🙂

  5. I definitely experience this kind of fellowship especially within my ladies bible study group. Just yesterday I was blown away when one of the ladies from my group went out of her way to do something for me totally instigated by her. I’ve seen out of this same group ladies put their needs on hold to attend to someone else.
    Being in a small group where you feel safe to share your unmasked self (many of us wear masks), where you share experiences that are unique to others, and no-one sighs or exclaims, or raises their brows, or gives you the “how could you” look, but there is total acceptance.

  6. Is the description of fellowship in the passage reflective of Christian fellowship as you experience it?
    Within my smaller network of friends and Christian siblings – Yes. Outside of that circle I would say it’s inconsistent. But even as I answer the question I wondered if I was consistent with displaying these qualities beyond my circle.
    What are some things we can do to encourage more of this kind of fellowship in our churches?
    Get to know more about the people outside my “circle” and be the example.

  7. Is the description of fellowship in the passage reflective of Christian fellowship as you experience it?
    No, unfortunately not. For me, I have gone through a long “bad patch,” and during that time I felt very much abandoned by the Christian family I thought I had. If not for God, my biological family and the precious few true Christian brother(s) and sister(s), I don’t know where I would be.

    What are some things we can do to encourage more of this kind of fellowship in our churches?
    Remind people that there is no such thing as “big talk.” People who spew Christian propaganda where life is perfect and we all know the responses and the designer messages any mature Christians have heard 100 times before do some serious damage. We need to have it as a value to pay attention to the real world and to real people who have relationship issues, financial crises, single parent issues etc. We need to not live in a Christian bubble that is much more about self promotion than it is about having a heart like God’s heart, a heart like El Roi, the God who sees us.

  8. Good evening everyone!

    I would love to be part of the kind of fellowship described in the above scripture. But I realize it takes two hands to clap. Part of the responsibility is mine in that I am not easy to get to know. I used to think this was a good thing – congratulated myself for being mysterious, but as I matured (in Christ) I now see it as a barrier – which is what it truly is – a defense mechanism as a means of protecting myself. The product of sad childhood experiences.

    When I have found the courage to reach out to others at Westside they have been nothing but kind to me. And when I was in need they were quick to come to my aid, in a way that I believe was supernatural. These acts really strengthened my faith. Perhaps this is God’s way of showing me that two is better than one. I don’t have to be the lone ranger.

    Therefore my recommendation for greater fellowship at churches are:
    – Encourage group activities and make it open with a few exceptions for e.g. age and gender (Westside already does this)
    – Be the first to reach out
    – Do not judge others – you don’t know enough about a person to judge correctly
    – Be compassionate
    – Listen
    – If you are not undertaking a sermon, do not preach

    The church must be a safe place for sinners to feel understood and accepted as human beings – achieving this state will foster greater fellowship. And that means everyone for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23

  9. Yes I would say there are glimpses of the kind of fellowship as described in the passage. For example, in the men’s fellowship. However, this occurs mainly in our comfort zone.

    To get into the deep, meaningful fellowship, i certainly think it is necessary to expand our zone of fellowship beyond persons we are comfortable with. Additionally, we need to be real and take the risk of exposing our true selves to those with whom we associate. We need to remove the mask.

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