When Jesus called his first disciples he called them to follow Him. The call to follow Jesus was never a call to isolation, it was a call to community.
Jesus spent time with the crowds, the 12, smaller groups of disciples and even one-on-one. The disciples were meant to follow both His teaching and His way. By being with Jesus they observed not just what he said, but how he said it. They shared conversations over meal-times, experienced his love, and no doubt laughed together. They spent time with one another.
On the launch day of the Jerusalem church, 3000 people were baptised. There was little to no preparation just a remnant of Jesus’ followers meeting in a loaned room. The Holy Spirit showed up, Peter preached and revival took place. They had no strategy and no infrastructure, but 3000 new Christians to be discipled.
This was an impossible task for the 11 disciples and their new recruit Mathias. Even though Jesus preached to 1000’s his discipleship groups ranged from one to 120. The task ahead for these 12 key leaders was monumental if not impossible.
The simple key? These new Christians devoted themselves first to God and then to each other. They met in larger groups within the huge temple, probably taking over a few of the large porticos that encircled the temple. But, importantly they hung out in each other’s homes, enjoying meals, praying for each other, meeting each other’s needs and sharing stories of Jesus and their new understanding of scripture.
Dr Luke tells us that this dedication to ‘one another’ saw need eliminated from the church community and new believers added every day. The silver bullet in the church of Jesus Christ has never been about great leaders and a professional clergy but siblings, brothers and sisters, committed to ‘one another’. They were called to:
Be devoted to one another (Romans 12:10)
Honour one another above yourselves (Romans 12:10)
Provoke one another to love and good works (Hebrews 10:24)
Show hospitality to one another (1 Peter 4:9)
Here’s the thing… you can’t do one another on your own!
Why one another?
It’s in the context of God-centred, healthy relationships that we grow into the likeness of God, we move towards maturity as disciples of Jesus. You can follow Jesus on your own, but we’re better together. We’re also called to make disciples and you can only make disciples if you are connected to others.
What does this look like for us?
Over the course of this series, and beyond, our biggest encouragement is for you to get connected to people. Have fun, laugh, eat, and spend time with one another. Some people might have loads of connections and friendships in church – take the time to foster and develop them. Here are some practical suggestions:
- If you have a house, Invite others over, show hospitality and enjoy food together.
- Arrange a meet up at a park, lake, coffee shop or restaurant and share some time with one another
- Arrange with a group to grab some food after church on a Sunday
- If you’re part of the family at MKCC, take some time on a Sunday to look for people who might be new or you don’t recognise and get to know them
- Sign up for a serving team at MKCC – click here
Some people might not be connected in church – take the next step to get to know some people. Here are some practical suggestions:
- Just say Hi to some people at church. Introduce yourself and ask how their week has been
- Come to our Guest Lounge or Connection Point on a Sunday, we’ll help you connect to people. Here are some of the ways:
- New Friends Event
If you’re new to church, our New Friends event on Sunday 1st May is a great place to meet others. To sign up click here.
- Life Groups
Life groups are one of the best ways to meet people in a smaller setting where you really get to know them. Life Groups are places where those relationships can grow and will also help you grow in your faith. Click here for more information.
- New Friends Event
So this series…
Make an intentional effort to spend time with other people and put into practice some of the New Testament one another statements. Serve one another, love one another, pray for one another, encourage one another. Catch up with the people who you’ve been meaning to catch up with for ages, connect into life group again, hang out with the team you serve in. Be with one another