Created for Community: We are called into a relationship with God through His one and only Son, Jesus Christ. We are also called into the Body of Christ on earth, the church. The Lord designed His Body so that we are mutually interdependent upon one another (see Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 12). We need each other.
A crucial component: Many believers minimize the importance of being with like-minded believers, thinking that they can grow in the Faith solely by listening to sermons and doing personal Bible reading. While both are of great importance, so too is developing relationships within the Body of Christ. In this way, we love one another and bear one another’s burdens. Fellowship is more than mere small talk over punch and cookies-- it is building genuine friendships of trust, sharing, caring, and partnership in gospel mission.
Hebrews 3:13 illustrates the necessity of true Christian fellowship by saying, “But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called ‘today,’ that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” This verse points out that encouragement is not just an optional accessory to the Christian life. Rather, it is central to it!
The danger of isolation: Simply put, isolation kills. 1 Peter 5:8 describes our adversary as a roaring lion seeking someone to devour. Lions try to cut one out of the herd-- get one alone and it is easy prey. We don’t want that to happen to any of our people. Thus, we have established a few environments for growth that are conducive to relationship-building as we interact over God’s Word, support one another in prayer, and get to know each other. These include:
- Sunday School at 9:30 AM
- Bible Study on Sundays at 4:30 PM
- Midweek Meeting on Wednesdays at 6:45 PM
We hope to add additional gatherings in time. One expert in practical theology maintains that “...small groups should not be seen as something a church has but as something a church is.” At Grace, we agree. We have additional opportunities for men to get together and for women to do the same. In addition, we hold church-wide fellowship meals on a quarterly basis. But to us, fellowship is not just an event, it is opening our hearts and homes in Christian hospitality. Join us!
You can listen to a recent sermon devoted to the topic of fellowship at https://www.gracefv.com/sermons/sermon/2020-02-23/we-are-gpc-part-2-fellowship.