Is that your friend or your family?
It’s not uncommon when growing up to think of a brother or sister as also being a best friend.
That’s because the familial bond included all those aspects of what we share and experience with only the best and closest of friends, but goes even deeper because we’re family.
There’s an aspect of that kind of relationship that should be in the church but is often missing.
Leaders routinely encourage the people in their flocks to make friendships with each other and “do life together.” But there’s a bit of a misnomer in what is being said: we’re already more than friends, we’re family!
The average church member might identify with only a handful of people in their local church as being “friends” and are disconnected from the rest of the congregation. They sit with the same people, go to lunch after church with the same people, and attend the same small group together.
The problem is, everyone else they’re disconnected from are still their brothers and sisters, yet there’s not a “family bond” tying them together.
There should be.
“But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God,” John 1:12.
“God decided in advance to
adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus
Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure,” Ephesians 1:5.
The issue isn’t one of simply “making friends” with others within the church, the greater issue is living out our true relationship as brothers and sisters!
God has adopted us into His family, we belong to each other! Now we need to live like it.
“So now we can tell who
are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does
not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God,” 1 John 3:10.
“Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions,” 1 John 3:18.
Do you love other Christians as your brothers and sisters? Or are you just looking to make a few friends in church?