Thursday, 1 July 2010

Back on air.

My blogs have been held up by rather complicated changes made by Google, which were beyond my IT skills to deal with. Now, thanks to wonderful help from my friends Scott & Melody Nightingale, these problems have been sorted out and I can get back on air, or rather, cyberspace.

I have been using a book of daily readings compiled from the writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and today the passage selected was from his wonderful little book, “Life Together”. I would like to share it because I believe it speaks to a problem many find who have left the institutional church regarding fellowship.

“Christians cannot take for granted that they will be allowed to live together with other Christians….. The degree to which God gives the gift of visible communion varies. Christians in the diaspora are comforted by a brief visit from a fellow Christian, a common prayer and a fraternal blessing. They gain strength from a letter written by the hand of a Christian. The handwritten greeting of Paul in his letter was indeed such a sign of fellowship. Others receive the gift of Sunday fellowship in community worship. Still others live a Christian life in the fellowship of their family. Among Christians today a desire has arisen together with other Christians during work breaks for a time to find life together under the Word.. Today Christians again understand life together as the grace that it is, as something unusual , as the ‘roses and lilies’ of the Christian life.”

We are so frequently told that it is impossible to survive and thrive without regularly gathering with others, and made to feel guilty that we are “not fellowshipping”, but the reality is that many who have stepped aside from the old ways of church find themselves relatively isolated and unable to enjoy frequently meeting with fellow-believers. Others are blessed by having taken the step outside in company with others and so are often able to be together. I have learned to accept the circumstances in which Father has placed me. I have known the joy of life together, rich experiences of sharing life with others, and now in these later years of my life I am immensely thankful to Father for those who visit me from time to time, for encouraging e-mails and contacts on Skype. Such gifts of grace keep me assured of my part in the Church which Jesus is building.


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