We are considering the concept of connectedness as the goal of the local church for every believer, including restored dropout believers. Last week we looked at the first cord: a heart for the pastor and vision of the local church.
The second of the three cords of connection is:
2. Personal relationships in the local church
The second cord of connectivity of the believer to the local church is the development of personal relationships with others in the local church (Col. 3:12-14).
Relationships provide a fertile training ground for spiritual growth. The fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23) is produced in the rubbing together of different personalities who are learning to submit to one another in love. These relationships will serve as support, encouragement, strengthening and correction in life.
It is imperative, not just to have relationships to other believers, but to have relationships to believers in your local church. The reason is that believers connected to another church have the vision and truth relevant to their calling. The function or vision is different for different churches—some are eyes, ears, hands, feet and other body parts. The believer will become distracted from his place in the body if he only receives input from those in another body part. It is vital that each believer develop relationships with others in their local body.
This cord is developed as believers in the body reach out toward one another. The effort and emphasis here is on you, as a member of the body, to reach out to the other believers in the church body, especially the disconnected ones, to cultivate these relationships.
Action Tip: For your own part, do you have relationships beyond "Hi" in your church? People that can minister to you and vice versa? For more depth on this read Hunters of the Harvest, chapter 15.
Louis Posthauer is the executive director of Hunters of the Harvest Ministry. He has been actively involved in the local church for more than 37 years and currently serves as a lay leader and teacher at Living Word Church of the Nazarene in Houston. For more information, visit huntersoftheharvest.org.
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