This year, continuing on the path that God has invited me to be a traveler upon, I will be reflecting on various things concerning Advent and Christmas. As I grow in my own understanding, I hope that any who read this will mature alongside me.
With that being said, tonight’s post is about fellowship. This is a word easily tossed around amongst evangelical Christians these days, with some churches even adopting it as part of their name. But, much like the word compassion, it’s a word we seem to be out of touch with sometimes.
Dinner. Movies. Laughter. These things are very much a part of fellowship, but they are not the sum total. Depression. Fear, Doubt. Grief. Frustration. These things are also a part of having true fellowship. Not sure that’s right? Think about Jesus’ disciples: they’re followers, He calls them his friends, they abandon Him when he’s most in need, and then He cooks them breakfast. That’s fellowship.
There’s another element of fellowship amongst God’s people that I think if often missed: theological reassurance. I’m sure some will say, “huh?” But it’s really simple. The Bible tells us that certain things are true, and we’re to encourage people by reminding them of those truths. Take Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians, for instance:
But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words (I Thessalonians 4:13-18).
It’s supposed to be uplifting to us that Jesus has come, and will come again! We’re supposed to think about it, soak it in, and let it find expression through our lives!
Advent invites us to that.
So as Advent is fully underway, and Western culture pauses briefly to acknowledge a King (even if most of them don’t know who He is), we rejoice that Christ will return. And we get to be a part of that.