by Angie Turner
Recently, I became aware of the Christian's tendency to define Christian fellowship as something that is confined to Sunday morning services or the result of belonging to a "church." Yet the truth is, WE are THE CHURCH! Wherever we are in fellowship with one another. Our fellowship is not in an organization, but in Christ. It is He who makes us THE CHURCH. We are one in Him and therefore, we are one with one another.
Christian fellowship consists of this relationship we have with each other because of being in Christ. God works outside the church system just as much as within it because He works in men's hearts, no matter where we are. God is bigger than our systems and isn't confined to them. Therefore, neither do they confine us – not in our relationship with God, nor in our fellowship with each other.
Believers in the Bible experienced fellowship both within and outside of their system. They experienced it in the synagogue, in the temple, in their homes, on the street, etc. Likewise, we experience fellowship when we go for lunch, attend Bible studies, share in a coffee group, get together with a friend, or even chat on the Internet with other believers. All of these forms of gathering together are just as valid and beneficial as organized church.
Don't write off the church experience, but don't confine fellowship to just that. Learn to enjoy the fellowship and encouragement between believers no matter what context it comes in. Focus on Christ in us. This is the true source of our fellowship with one another.
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