Welome to week two! We will take the next 5 days to focus on the purpose and benefit of living in community with others. In a world that causes us to isolate, hide behind a computer screen or phone, or even be proud to make excuses to stay in your shell, the Bible challenges us to act differently-
“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
Friends, now is not the time to “give up meeting together.” If anything, it is the time to make the most of every opportunity to encourage and love those around us! It isn’t always easy to make time for friends, nor is it always natural– but it is worth the work. Do the hard thing and keep that connection, no matter what!
Day one pokes at a sensitive subject. Am I the only one who rejoices in cancelled plans?! Today we challenge you to get vulnerable with your friends, even if you’d rather curl up with a good book for the evening.
“We have spoken freely to you, Corinthians, and opened wide our hearts to you. We are not withholding our affection from you, but you are withholding yours from us. As a fair exchange—I speak as to my children—open wide your hearts also.”
2 Corinthians 6:11-13
Do you find yourself jumping for joy when your kid’s practice is cancelled, when your friend texts to say they can longer meet you, or you weren’t able to find a sitter for date night? Sometimes cancelled plans can be a much needed day off, but sometimes we are running away from the very community God has given us.
Do you find yourself avoiding close relationships within your family or friends? Do you hold back your most intimate fears, disappointments or even celebrations in an effort to self-protect? God has called us to open wide our hearts to safe people and allow others to share in our vulnerability, speaking the very things we need to hear. This won’t happen when we hide in our own comfortable places. We need to take the risk and share!
With that being said, there is wisdom in choosing well those we will let speak into our lives. We get to choose those people! Although they won’t be perfect and will sometimes fail us, they will also build us up and remind us of who we are in Christ. I’d say that’s a worthy investment!
1.) Transparency vs. vulnerability.
Transparency is sharing the facts of your situation, while vulnerability is sharing the emotion of your situation. Many times we are transparent, but not vulnerable. Are there emotions you have you have been afraid to share with others? Share those things with God today.
2.) Ask God if you are harboring any unforgiveness toward someone that hurt you emotionally. Pray for God to heal those hurts.
3.) Continue being a friend that connects! Ask God who you should encourage today. Jot down something to text, email or say to them in person.