Authentic Fellowship From James MacDonald : Day 1
The Discipline of Fellowship
A lot of people don’t realize fellowship is a spiritual discipline. It’s not just something helpful, but something commanded. And one of the surest barometers of the quality of your Christian life is the quality of your Christian relationships.
Acts 2:42-44 summarizes the life of the early church by saying, “They devoted (or they continued steadfastly) in the apostles’ teaching (and what?) the fellowship.” Now what is fellowship? Fellowship basically means “our common life together.”
I kind of grew up thinking fellowship was something that happened after the service down in the church basement, with cherry punch and cheesy conversations. That’s not what made the early church so powerful. They took fellowship to a new level—the level we want to be at!
The Greek word for fellowship is koinonia. Koinonia is translated in the New Testament partnership or sharing. Sometimes it’s translated communion or fellowship. Fellowship is a relationship between individuals which involves (this is key) active participation in a common interest. And, as a result of our participation in the common interest, we have a residual interest in one another.
Harvest meets regularly on seven campuses. We are one church in several locations bound together by a common purpose. As we engage in that common purpose, the relationships that are the result of that engagement produce fellowship. What holds all of this together is the Spirit of God working through the Word of God, and our service to God binds us together in love toward one another. That is what fellowship really is; our common life together. And it deepens as we persist in our common life together.
Prayer – Father, You included fellowship as a key component of the newborn church. Forgive us for dumbing, lightening, and trivializing fellowship. Help us not to be satisfied with counterfeit fellowship, but to seek You together. Lord, we want the world to see our love for one another, and the genuine common life You intend for Your people. That kind of fellowship brings You glory and draw others to You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.