Fellowship. We all need it. We all seek it. I have been privileged over the last day and a half to find some great fellowship with the pastor’s of the Newton Presbytery. Yesterday, I traveled down to Wharton for a half day of study with fellow pastors. I left there to attend my first COM meeting—more fellowship there! This morning I traveled down to Blairstown to attend a breakfast with 8 more new pastor-friends. The food was great, but the time of sharing was even greater. For too long I have been “working in a vacuum.” The ability to share joys and struggles with men and women who are going through the same joys and struggles has a strengthening affect on everyone involved.
I believe that fellowship is one of the key pieces for a congregation that wants to grow. How can we grow if we don’t know each other? How can we know each other if we don’t take the time and the effort to do so? Now I know we Presbyterians like to eat, but we need to make sure that as we have these times of fellowship that ALL people are invited into the circle. Just sharing food, without sharing each other is NOT fellowship! I once heard fellowship described as “all the fellows in the ship.” I take that picture a bit further and think that fellowship can be best pictured as everyone in those old warships with multiple oars. When we are all rowing together, great progress is made, but when some people are rowing against the rest (or stowing their oars and not rowing at all) progress is slow or nonexistent.
So what am I saying? It is time for all us to get our oars in the water and work together. When we do, watch out world! So how about you? Are you rowing, stowing or working against progress? It is time to work together under the guidance of our Holy Coxswain, Jesus Christ!