DEMONSTRATING CONCERN FOR OTHERS
Read Philippians 4:1-5.
Most of us think Faith is a warm and welcoming, friendly church. That’s the way most of us would like it to feel. However, for people who attend but are not actively involved in a small group, the likelihood is that they will think of the church as growing but cold. They could feel forgotten, left out, and lonely.
A friend in another state shares his family’s experience of attending a new church and trying to find a Sunday School class. One class they visited had planned a hayride social. They decided to go, but when they arrived, no one spoke to them. Dinner was served by a campfire, but all the other couples huddled in their own groups. There were so many in the class that they needed two trailers for the hayride. Everyone, except the teacher, his wife, and my friends climbed onto the other trailer. To make matters worse, one of the couples came over and offered that there were two more seats on their trailer, and the teacher should be with the class. The teacher and his wife moved, leaving the visitor and his wife all alone. Such a story would be comic if it were not so tragic! They did not return to that church. No amount of great preaching and excellent music would matter. Without the chance for relationships, the church was flat, and even worship would be just another event to attend. We all need PEOPLE. It is PEOPLE who care, not programs. PEOPLE call, bring food in crisis, and know your name. PEOPLE who know us are the ones we call when we’re in need, and they are the ones who call us. Without significant relationships, there is little hope that a church experience can be life changing.
Do you have relationships like that at Faith? Caring relationships do not just happen. They take time and lots of work. You will rarely receive more from a relationship than what you are willing to give.
Pray for your Bible Fellowship Group. If you do not attend one, ask God to direct you to where you need to be. Change the focus in your church experience from you and your needs to the needs of others. Perhaps the Lord will show you someone else in the class who is lonely so you can be the kind of friend to them that you would like to have.