the weblog of Alan Knox

Relationships and Ministry…

Posted by on Jan 30, 2007 in community, service | 3 comments

A young man who is a part of our fellowship recently told me that he was having trouble building relationships. He lives about 30 minutes away from others in our fellowship. Several of us suggested that he look for a group of believers who live closer to him.

Why would we do that? Do we want to break fellowship with him? Absolutely not! And, we are not breaking fellowship with him at all. Don’t we care about growing the church? Certainly! But, we recognize that we will not grow the church. Only Christ will grow the church. Why would we suggest that someone meet with other believers?

First, we recognize that the Christian life is designed by God to be lived in fellowship with other believers. This cannot happen for this young man if he only meets with his Christian brothers and sisters for a couple of hours on Sunday. This is not fellowship… this is attendance. There is a difference. We desire more for this young man and for all brothers and sisters in Christ. We desire to see all believers developing real relationships (maturing relationships) with other believers.

So, I saw this young man a couple of days ago. He has had a great time getting to know some Christian men who live near him. Besides spending time with them, he has also started ministering to his community with them. They are playing basketball at a local partk, getting to know some of the other young men there, and sharing Scripture with them.

What a joy to see real ministry (both to the church and to those outside the church) growing out of fellowship with other believers!


3 Comments

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  1. 1-30-2007

    Alan,
    I love your heart in this, encouraging him to find what is best for him rather than trying to mold him into your deal.

  2. 1-30-2007

    Grace,

    Thanks for the encouraging words. I think what’s best for him is also best for the kingdom of God. Hopefully, this will always be our motivation.

    -Alan

  3. 1-30-2007

    Alan -

    There definitely is a difference between attendance and fellowship. We currently live 35 minutes from our church because we lived here before we started it and for various reasons are not in a position to move into another home at this time. But if we could, we would.

    But the vast majority of the people in our church also live about that far away. I can’t really speak for others, but it doesn’t seem to bother anyone and I would venture to guess it’s because we (generally) tend to equate fellowship with attandance.

    Hmmmmm … thought provoking. Again, I am seeing more and more how we (again, generally) tend to think that it’s all about the meetings (attendance) and less about actually loving, ministering, fellowshiping and edifying others.

    Thanks for the thought!

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