You’re sitting in a group setting. It’s small enough to be personal, yet large enough to give a decent level of unpredictability to the exchange you share. The conversation changes to matters of God and the heart (in this case, yours). The rule of participation is singular: you must offer honesty that comes at a cost to you.

You cringe at the very thought. You’re not feeling anywhere close to exposing your heart in this way. I’m gonna guess you’re also not looking for a motivation to change your mind. There is a part of you that appreciates the idea of fellowship, but its practical elements make up that large area where you get tripped up and tongue-tied.

When someone in the groups comments, “Oh, where would we be without fellowship?” you instantly think of a thousand places that would make for a very comfortable exchange in residence. There would be no reason to dislike fellowship except that it always has that bite; thus, you do all you can to avoid the unpleasantness.

What you may not realize is that by choosing to not sacrifice your present comforts, you are not making room for the wider range of creature-comforts that God designed for you. There is, in fact, more to being comfortable than never experiencing discomfort. Comfort is the reality of finding that spot that is most suited to you, what truly delivers the best results to your person. Such comfort cannot be offered to you by the world. It is solely the gift of your Maker. When you and I open our hearts to God, and to others who have made Him their Lord, we enable ourselves to be retrained in those very best delights that God originally set out for our lives. We don’t have to worry about disliking fellowship (or our fellows); we will thirst for it in the way God intended.

 

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