Fellowship – it is a term that we hear often, but why does it matter? Why do other people matter in my spiritual walk? There are many reasons to form relationships with other believers, but I would like to take a minute to just explore the idea of fellowship and some reasons fellowship fulfills some of our deepest needs as individuals: the need for help, the need for relationship, and the need for accountability.
“Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.” –Helen Keller We all need help sometimes. We are personally limited by our own abilities, intellect, resources, etc, but when we work with others, we can draw upon their strengths and accomplish great things. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 says,
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!”
It is practical to work together with others. We so often like to think of what we personally could accomplish, but to think in only those terms is to be short-sighted.
Fellowship also matters because we have an inherent need for relationship. We yearn to be known and to be understood. We also have a deep need to fulfill the needs of others. Our God is relational and as his image bearers, we were created to need each other. In Genesis 2:18 God gives his reason for creating the second human being: “It is not good that the man should be alone.” God not only tells us that we need other people, he shows us through his word how relationships with others can change our lives. One only needs to take a look at the relationship between David and Jonathan to see that the encouragement and love of a friend can be profoundly impacting.
Finally, fellowship with other believers is important because we have a need for accountability. Proverbs 27:6 tells us that, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend…” We so often do not see our own faults and need others who are willing to prayerfully and lovingly bring our sin to our attention. In verse seventeen of the same chapter, the psalmist writes, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” We have been created in such a way that we need others to make us better. We need others and they need us. We are to be available to help, to counsel, to confront, etc. If we all walk alone, we will all be walking vulnerably. It is not necessary and it is not wise. We need our brothers and sisters to teach and admonish us in wisdom (Colossians 3:16).
It is vitally important that we do not neglect fellowship with other believers. Without that fellowship, we will experience spiritual restlessness, and the needs of our hearts for help, relationship, and accountability will be left unmet. Let us not miss out on the joy and satisfaction of fellowship.