“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:23-25)
You need fellowship. You really really do.
Now fellowship is defined as “getting together with God’s people for the purpose of mingling and learning more about God”. Well, that’s my definition, at any rate. You see, “intent” is paramount when it comes to fellowship. If you have not come together for the purpose of learning more about God and doing his will, then it’s not fellowship. It’s just “getting together”. I’ve done that many times. I’ve gotten together with Christians in the workplace and worked. But there was no inherent spiritual blessing in that.
On the other hand, I have spent time with work mates over the lunch hour, and gotten together and prayed. Now there WAS tremendous spiritual blessing in THAT! On the other hand, it is possible for people to “come to church” and not really have any fellowship. Once again, it depends upon your intent. Have you come to church in FAITH, believing that God is going to bless you there? Then be very careful about leaving too soon. One of the worst things you can do, I have found, is to step OUT of the church building BEFORE God has “done His thing”. You say, “What thing?” And the answer is, “The thing that He had intended to do in bringing you to together for fellowship in the first place.”
You DO want to be blessed, right? Then you need to “listen” and “look” for the blessing with your spiritual ears and eyes. If you observe that someone needs help, then lend a hand and help. If you feel the Lord prompting you to ask a question during a Sunday school class, then ask that question! If you feel prompted to ask for prayer, then by all means, ask for prayer! If you think someone else needs prayer, then offer to pray for them! But DON’T LET THE BLESSING OF FELLOWSHIP pass you by! Once again, you can “go do the church thing” and STILL MISS THE BLESSING that God had intended for you to have! Not long ago, I had attended a wonderful fellowship gathering, and it was CLOSING TIME. But I felt the Lord saying, “Don’t you leave ahead of the others! Linger a bit!” So I did! I did not step ahead of those who were locking the doors, but lingered until they were outside, too, and I could walk with them.
It was during those very precious moments, right at the very end, that the blessing “fell” on me. And fall it did! This all goes to show that if you want the blessing to fall on you, you sometimes — and oftentimes — have to be willing to wait for it! Speak up if God says to speak up, and don’t be silent! And by all means, wait! Good things come to those who are willing to wait! Or, in the words of Psalm 27:14, “Wait for the LORD; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the LORD.” And in other parts of the Bible, whether directly or by inference, we learn that those who are willing to wait, and those who are not in a hurry, will reap a tremendous blessing form the Lord.
You may recall the miracle at Cana (John 2), where Jesus turned the water into wine. It was NOT at the START of the party that Jesus turned the water into wine – rather, it was at the END! For we read the words of the headwaiter, “Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now” (John 2:10). This principle of waiting until the END to do something new and exciting is not foreign to Scripture. It is something we see time and time again. The Lord is looking to see who will wait, and who has the patience to endure. Are you in a hurry to get out of the church building, or to leave the prayer meeting, so you can “get on with life”? Then consider your blessing lost already. But if you are willing to WAIT for it, and to SERVE others who are in need, then YOU are the type of person that the Lord seeks to bless! And bless you He surely will!
Jesus told the disciples to WAIT for the promise of the Holy Spirit, and those who were willing were blessed indeed!. “And behold,” Jesus said, “I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.” (Luke 24:49) What by the way were these people doing during that time of waiting? None other than praying and fasting and fellowshipping together. And it was THOSE PEOPLE that God first gave His precious Holy Spirit to. My friends, there is nothing better than that, is there? Surely not! So then, if God is willing to give His BEST to those who are willing to fellowship, pray, fast and wait for it, then surely we ourselves cannot do better than that, can we? Surely not!
Thus, wait we shall. And pursue the blessing we shall. In faith and with commitment, to a Lord who cannot fail us. “For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.” (Matthew 7:8)