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Meeting Needs

Meeting Needs

We’re continuing through the book of Romans, looking at the walk of maturity.

Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

Romans 12:13

The first half of this verse has an interesting construction. It actually reads; as to the needs of the saints, sharing.

Think about it. Needs – we all have them. When we talk about meeting peoples needs, our first thoughts usually go toward money. There are plenty of places in Scripture that talk about financial needs. But, this verse is talking about more than that.

Do not let any 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.

Ephesians 4:29

We must be prepared to give more than just money. What about a word of grace from our lips? There are many people who could use that word of encouragement.

What about those who are in need of healing? There are also many who need fellowship, guidance, or one of many other kinds of help we could give.

So, what do we do when we see the needs of others in the body of Christ? The Greek word used in this verse for sharing is koinonia. It literally means to be in partnership.

I’ve found that, in this generation, we really don’t understand what partnership is all about. It’s the realization that we all have a part to play in each others lives. It’s a very powerful part of our Christian relationships.

I believe that it’s a perception problem. Sometimes we simply view church as a place where we meet together. Instead, we should understand that it’s an organism that we’re a part of. It’s about more than just our stuff. It’s sharing who we are.

The church of the Philippians is a great example of this.

Moreover, as you Philippians know, in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out from Macedonia, not one church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you only;

Philippians 4:15

Paul commended them for their partnership in the Gospel. They were a blessing to Paul and helped to reach those in other parts of the world. But, they also received a blessing.

And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:19

Most don’t realize that this is specifically a promise for partners. We are partners in the work that God is doing. It’s like the flow of blood in the human body. That’s how blessings flow through the body of Christ.

Then, along with this, we’re told to practice hospitality. The verse literally says to pursue the love of strangers. That means love those who are very different from you. This is not the only place we’re told to do this.

Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.

1 Peter 4:9-10

It’s a way of giving out God’s grace to others. Why are we having church, if we’re not practicing hospitality? Of course, this also comes with a blessing.

Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.

Hebrews 13:2

The fact is that we don’t always know everything that’s going on in the spirit. It won’t be until we’re in God’s presence when we find out all of the effects that our partnership and hospitality had on the world.

Question: How have you practiced these qualities recently?

© 2021 Nick Zaccardi

 
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Posted by on September 8, 2021 in Ministry, Relationships, Spiritual Walk

 

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The Facts About Missing Church

meLyRzsI’m not going to try and make you feel guilty for missing church. As a pastor I’ve found that guilt never accomplishes anything lasting in the lives of people. But, where missing church is concerned, there are some principles at work that most believers don’t know about.

The principle of positioning yourself. We all need God’s blessing, provision, and wisdom. Maybe there are things you’re trusting Him for right now. God has a specific way that He provides for us. In order for us to receive, we need to fulfill the conditions that He sets forth. The Lord already has the supply; it’s up to us to be in the position to receive it.

God has an appointed a time and place for you to receive those things that you’re trusting him to accomplish in you. If the Lord has called you to be a part of a certain local church, then many times that will be the place He expects to meet with you. If God shows up at the appointed time and place with your answer, and you’re not there, you’ve just missed out on your blessing.

How many “unanswered prayers” are simply the result of us deciding to miss church for the wrong reasons? We need to compare the way we show up to church with the other activities of our lives. How does our church attendance compare to work, school, sports, or the other things we’re involved in? That’s how you can usually tell if the reason for missing is justified.

The principle of fellowship. The word fellowship, in the Greek, is the word koinonia. It’s a word that speaks of placement. It means that I have a share in what’s taking place. It’s like being a shareholder in a corporation. I share in the profit or the loss.

In the body of Christ I have a role to play. There’s somebody who needs the blessing that I have. If I “take a day off”, there will be something missing in our fellowship. Conversely, how many times have you missed a blessing because the person who had it just didn’t feel like showing up?

The principle of the church as an organism. We’re not just an organization. We rely on each other. Until we get a vision of this truth, we’ll never rise to our true potential in Christ. The writer of Hebrews understood this fact.

Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Hebrews 10:25

We need each other. Our blessings and provisions in Christ are all interdependent upon each other. What I do affects you and your actions affect me. If we want to see revival and a renewed power in our churches, then we must stand together in our fellowship.

Questions: Where do you fit into the body of Christ? How do you actively participate in the Kingdom of God?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
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Posted by on October 16, 2015 in Encouragement, Fellowship, The Church

 

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Sharing Fellowship

meLyRzsThe Bible talks a lot about the fellowship that we share as believers. Fellowship is an interesting word. We throw it around a lot in Christian circles. Usually we just mean that we get together for meetings. I believe that we need a deeper understanding of it.

They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
Acts 2:42

This verse talks about what it was like in the early days of the church. These are the things that the Christians of that era devoted themselves to. One of the things mentioned was the fellowship.

The word fellowship in this verse is the Greek word koinonia. It meant a sharing or a participation. That’s different than what some people think. Many times we assume that just because we come together for church meetings we’re having a fellowship. Many churches even use the word fellowship in their names.

The reality is that without any sharing or participation there can be no true fellowship. It’s when God’s people come together and participate in each other’s lives that true koinonia takes place. It’s giving and receiving help, encouragement, love and strength.

Even in the English language this word fellowship has a much deeper meaning than most church people realize. It actually comes from an Old English word. It has two parts. Fell, which means property, and low, which means to lay down. All together it means laying your property down. How often do we think of fellowship in those terms?

It seems that many Christians go to church for what they can get out of it. Does the church have everything I’m looking for? Does it have childcare, great music, and a comfortable sanctuary?

That’s not the attitude of fellowship. Fellowship is all about what I can contribute to the whole. What can I put in that will make the church better.

No, it’s not just about money. It’s about ministry, encouragement, leadership and a whole lot more that you’ve been gifted with. You’re blessed with the talents and resources that others need. That’s what you bring with you into the body of Christ.

We shouldn’t be trying to find the church that can best fulfill our wants and desires. Instead, we should be looking for a body of believers that will be blessed by the things that God has placed in us. We need to be sharers rather than just consumers.

We are not to live and act like the world does. Attending a church should not be like choosing a restaurant to go to or finding a daycare for our children. It’s a local manifestation of the Kingdom of God where I can plug into for mutual edification.

Be a part of the church in the true spirit of fellowship. Seek to be a blessing to others.

Question: How are you a blessing to the church you attend?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
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Posted by on April 24, 2015 in Encouragement, Ministry, The Church

 

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