So now we must cling tightly to the hope that lives within us, knowing that God always keeps his promises! Discover creative ways to encourage others and to motivate them toward acts of compassion, doing beautiful works as expressions of love. This is not the time to pull away and neglect meeting together, as some have formed the habit of doing, because we need each other! In fact, we should come together even more frequently, eager to encourage and urge each other onward as we anticipate that day dawning. (Hebrews 10:23-25 TPT)
When I was a young girl I remember one of my favourite experiences was playing a game we called “Runny, Runny, Jump!” It only happened in very special moments when I gripped in one hand the hand of my Mom, while in the other hand I held tightly to my Dad's hand. Being now tethered on both sides, we would all say the magic words together “Runny, Runny” and then, as though propelled from a canon, I both jumped and flew through the air as we all sang “Jump!”
This year, what is propelling you forward? Have you felt the joy and freedom of both jumping and flying into your mission?
When God invited each of us to join in on His grand mission to make Himself known to the world, He fully intended the experience to be life-giving. His design was simple: collectively abide in Jesus. Its not unlike Runny, Runny, Jump actually. To most fully experience the joy and wonder of joining God on mission, we are to be connected, both to God and to one another. If we let go of either one of those hands we will not soar.
In God's design, the Church is the “one another” hand we need hold. This past year it has been particularly challenging to remain tethered to the Church. The pandemic has led some to pursue their faith on their own. But search the scriptures, and I don't believe you will find a call to live out your faith alone. In fact, the passage above reminds us that “we need each other!” We are to eagerly “encourage and urge each other onward.” We are to propel one another on in our mission.
So how then, in the midst of this weird and distant season are we to feel well connected to the Church in order that we may enjoy the life-giving benefits? Below is a list of 21 ideas to increase your connection with your church. This is not an attempt to make you busy – it is an attempt to help you tap into what I believe is life-giving connection. I encourage you to prayerfully consider the ideas, and then commit to acting upon the one or two you hear the Spirit inviting you to pursue.
I am praying for you this year – that you may feel connected to the God who loves you, and the Church that encourages you and cheers you on in mission. You are loved.