I live in the digital age and I think it’s fantastic. . . . I was able to listen to pastor Lee’s message while being thousands of kilometres away. It was if I was present at Trinity. I don’t know why more people don’t do it. I can listen to sermons that were preached weeks and weeks ago. In fact one time I was listening to one of my own sermons I gave many months ago – and I fell asleep as I was listening! . . . . . now I did not write this blog to tell you that.
I wanted you to know that as I listened to Lee speaking eloquently about “fellowship” in the New Testament church he quoted a report from the Vancouver Foundation. In a survey in which they tried to find out the primary needs of people living in Vancouver, they were surprised and startled to learn that the number one need that people were feeling was the overwhelming sense of isolation. As I listened I found myself saying “Yes . . Yes!”.
Lee expressed it so well. Surely the mission of the church in the 21st century in our very affluent society is to address the suffocating sense of loneliness that so many people are experiencing. I am convinced that this is the very thing that Jesus would do. He longed to see people in community – he longed to see people discovering a new sense of the presence of God while they were experiencing togetherness.
Can you imagine a church that sees it’s mission as caring for it’s community in such a way that the many people who feel cut off from everyone else, begin to feel they are part of an accepting, welcoming community. Can you imagine a church whose facilities were open seven days a week, encouraging people to come in and build new friendships, to experience something of the warmth and grace of Christian friendship. Can you imagine a church that loved its community so much that it sought to form small groups of friends who learned about each other, who felt safe in sharing their lives with each other, and who made a commitment to pray for each other. Wow! I would want to be part of a church like that.
When you know you are loved by others – you cannot help love others. . . . . I encourage you to listen to Lee’s sermon on “fellowship” again. You will be blessed.