Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Today, I have shared a devotion,
over at:

"HAVE YOU EVER GONE ON A LONG TRIP? I was reflecting on the many trips that my husband and I have taken out of the country. Most of these trips abroad have been on mission trips with our church. We traveled in a large group and mostly we were told what to pack and what not to pack from the missionary we were going to assist. However, a couple of years ago..."

CLICK HERE to read the rest of this devotion!

to find my weekly post on

I have been studying this book about leaving a lasting legacy, ways to make a difference with my life (spiritually) and this is what I have been sharing the last several weeks here on Wednesdays. As I come to the last couple chapters of this study, a word seemed to jump off of the page this past week to me ... ~COMMUNITY~

I guess I am like most people, and I always thought of the word "community" as a place where people live. Living in homes, or apartment buildings that are in close proximity to each other. But in my study this past week, I realized that the original meaning of this word "community" is much deeper for thought. It refers to what we have in common and is actually related to the Latin word "FELLOWSHIP".

Isn't that interesting in relation to what we might consider our Christian Community. Having a true Christian Community means that we are bound together by our common faith or our fellowship with one another. That common denominator that blends is would be our faith in Jesus Christ.

But just like any other kind of community ... there are bound to be some diversity found in our Christian Communities. In your neighborhood community, you could have a row of all blue houses but then someone new moves in and paints their blue house YELLOW. Now, that is some kind of diversity. It doesn't make it right or wrong ... just different.

Our Churches are full of such diversity. Different opinions do not make it right or wrong ... just different. Such as picking out the color of the carpet? or do we sing hymns from the book or on the wall? See what I mean about diversity being in the church. Different doesn't give grounds for getting mad or even leaving the church over.

In last week's YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I was curious what kind of attitude all of you had about "anger" when you were growing up. The top 3 results of the poll?...

  1. 28% of those polled said that they had the philosophy growing up to "Get it off your chest and then kiss and make up!"
  2. 23% of the readers said that they had the attitude of "Don't ever let them know you are angry - grin and bear it!"
  3. 14% of those voting said that "Anger is dangerous - run and hide!"

Paul gives some clear qualities that we can relate to when it comes to strengthening our Christian Community in the book of Ephesians.

1. STRIVE FOR SPIRITUAL MATURITY (Ephesians 4:14 "Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming.")

In our Christian Community we should be striving for spiritual maturity, seeking to grow. We should not be "status quo" and remain where we started.

2. SEEK HONESTY AND TRUTH (Ephesians 4:25 "Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body.")

Putting on a false face and acting out a charade is not being real and honest. Remember the movie, "A Few Good Men"? Actor Jack Nicholson says, "Truth? You can't handle the truth!" On the contrary, in our Church fellowship - we need to speak the truth in love and the bond of His love is what will enable us to "handle the truth!"

3. ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER (Ephesians 4:32 "Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.")

Learning to build one another up with positive words is the glue that will hold your Christian Community together. If we are tearing one another down, getting angry at each other and holding grudges ... like any other community ... someone is bound to want to get away from this and move!

I wonder ... how settled is YOUR Christian Community? It is my prayer that in MY Christian Community (my church .... my fellowship with other believers) that I am doing my part to welcome newcomers. May my words and actions never cause someone to look to relocate.

These are my thoughts this week on how I can leave a legacy in my world. in my community. in my Christian Fellowship. Hope you will find your Christian Community strong and healthy!

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL... Please take time to vote in this weeks poll. You can find it on the side bar. Your opinion REALLY does matter to me!


Denise said...

Such an awesome post.

Laurie Ann said...

I'm with Denise! Awesome post. I enjoyed the way we can be spiritually mature about anger. In our home, the policy was to ignore it - it didn't exist. Don't mention it and don't let it show. Oh argh! I really had to change my thinking. Still am working on it to this day and this helps!

Stacy said...

Your post is like a spiritual "shot in the arm." Thanks for posting this.

Ms. Theophilus said...

Great post! Unfortunately my community underwent a major change...and now we're looking for a new one. It's painful to lose the real community you're talking about...