Last year, I found myself in very good company.” If you do not have a supporting Church, find one. If you study the Bible and find yourself longing for the Lord to call you to Heaven to be with Him, and those around you are not feeling it…get into a group of like-minded believers.
I cannot tell you how vital it is that believers in Jesus need to be banded and bonded together in these end times. How easy it is for Satan to get into our minds and try to discourage us and deter us from our witnessing and studying as the time nears for that wretched serpent to meet his final demise. So there can be power in numbers—a group who loves the Lord is a mighty fortress (albeit even a small one). Form a fortress people.
It is time to hunker down and hang together with other like-minded, believers. As the apostle Paul told us in his letter to the church of Thessalonica, in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18:
“For the Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel and with the trump of God, and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with Him in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore, comfort one another with these words.”
Hands down, one of the best pieces of advice ever given by the apostle Paul.
In no way, however, are we to shut ourselves off from the world—the world that needs witnesses, spreading the Gospel of Christ. With that said, pray always for opportunity, be prepared to testify for Jesus Christ and ask God unceasingly for strength, boldness and guidance in sharing your faith.
I have been amply blessed by my little group. There are eight or nine of us, I treasure their friendships. I treasure them, period. They are true gifts from God to me and they are the sustenance that I so desperately need to help me remember to hold onto the Lord’s hand on a daily basis.
God is the Almighty Counselor, the Great I Am. His people comprise the local Church. Doesn’t it make sense that we would need one another in the days in which we are living as constant reminders that we are reaching the end of our journeys here on this earth? And as daily wake-up calls to keep the oil in our lamps full, and absolute confirmation that, yes, we ARE going to see the Lord very soon.
Fellowship, whether direct, by phone, text, or e-mail is critical for all Christians in these last days. And when you find those similarly-believing people—well, you just know that God led you to them. It is unexplainable.
Things are changing every day. The speed in which the world is spinning out of control is mind blowing, and at times it is sometimes difficult to remember to pace ourselves and call on God when we feel normalcy slipping away. Even some church services have changed. We are all trying to adapt, but somehow, sometimes we feel it seems as though something is just not right—even in a congregational setting.
Well, if you feel that way, something is most likely NOT right. In fact, I heard a minister say that we have replaced PRAYER WITH PRAISE. Oh, a big AMEN to that. Praising our Lord is a necessary part of our walk with Him, but prayer leads us to Him. Prayer ties our knots tighter. Prayer humbles us and makes us be still, and KNOW THAT HE IS GOD.
So of course, prayer is another advantage to having a Church: Someone to pray daily for you; someone you can pray daily for, and feel the bond of that relationship growing and covering you with the warmth of a mention to God, on your behalf, from a true believer. I could go on and on, listing the advantages of having friends who love the Lord and want to be of encouragement to one another as we run the final leg of this race.
Is the Lord not enough? The Lord is much, much more than enough. The Lord is our Shepherd. Our friends are the sheep. We need one another. We are instructed to join together and worship and share and build up each other in Christian love. And we need commonality. We need people who can relate to the crisis of the day, or the hassles of the job, or the latest news headlines, or the sorrows of pain and loss. We need one another. We are brought together by God for that purpose. The Almighty, Provider that He is, knows who we need and He does just that, He provides.
First and foremost, we need to pray to God the Father constantly. We need to reach out to the Holy Spirit for strength and wisdom in these dark times. We need to look upon Jesus’ face, even if only in our mind’s eye, for joy and Blessed Hope. And we need to support one another. We need interaction and conviction. We need encouragement. We need to keep our brothers and sisters in Christ in close proximity, knowing all the while that we will see them and reside with them in our heavenly home and eventually, in the Millennial Kingdom and then eternity.
What an investment that is! And what an inspiration to become more Christ-like as the time to meet Him draws near.
If you feel like you are on your own out there, rejected or ridiculed by your friends and family, co-workers or neighbors, for believing that the time is short…find a Bible believing Church. Reach out to someone you know who believes in the Gospel and the subsequent life in Jesus Christ. Then prepare to be preserved. Your spirit will grow. Your mind will be refreshed and you will open up yourself to all kinds of opportunities to worship the Almighty.
Let me repeat, there is NO SUBSTITUTE for direct heart-to-heart prayer with God, Himself. He yearns to hear from us and we should yearn to go to Him without ceasing. Prayer and quiet time with the Lord and His Word are the lifeblood of a relationship with Him. We must focus every minute on His mercy and grace and we must put Him first in everything we do in our lives. If you find the right people, they will tell you this same thing.
And how do you know if you find the right people? They will be a praying Church.