”For I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you— that is, that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine” (Romans 1:11-12 ESV).
Do you long for fellowship with other believers? Do you yearn to bless and strengthen others, and to receive strength and blessing from them. I don’t.
I should, but if I’m honest with myself I’m usually contented to live in my own little world, with my own little faith. I place no expectations on others; I assume responsibility for my own faith walk.
But there come times when the comfort of a brother or sister in Christ, who has plowed through in the same valley or danced jubilantly on the same mountain peak, can be to us a shelter in the storm or a place of jubilation.
I know that God intends for us to live in fellowship with each other. He obviously wouldn’t have called all Christ-followers the Body of Christ! And as one body, we can’t pick and choose which members to include and which to exclude.
There are several diseases in which the body actually fights against itself. They are called auto-immune disorders. The immune system is over active and “attacks and damages its own tissues.” They are truly demonstrative of all of the divisions in the church.
Paul gives us a better picture of the body, and how it is supposed to function.
I receive comfort from you when I am mourning, for you have mourned and can relate to my situation. I receive wisdom from you when I have difficult decisions to make, for you have sought for and received the Lord’s wisdom when you have had difficult decisions to make. I receive strength from you when I feel weak. I receive grace from you when I am feeling unworthy. You rejoice with me when I rejoice. You cry with me when I cry. And I do the same for you.
The longer I live, the more I get it. Regardless of how we feel when we are walking on cloud nine, we need each other. My faith for you; and your faith for me.
Blessings on your week!