“We should not stop gathering together with other believers, as some of you are doing. Instead, we must continue to encourage each other even more as we see the day of the Lord coming.”
Through the years I have come to know that deep relationships don’t just happen. We speak of getting together, fully intending to do so, but life has a way of filling the calendar without us even realizing another month zipped past.
When my neighbor friends and I finally got together for our Christmas celebration, it was already January. As we enjoyed each other in the presence of the Lord, one shared of how God had prompted her to be intentional about relationships this year. We love to be together but work, ministry, commitments, travel, and caring for elderly moms leaves little time for sitting around the table talking and sipping coffee.
It was evident that God was also intentional that we be together, because just two days later we were gathered around the table again, due to expected snow.
Why was it so important that we be together?
Because we gathered for much more than coffee and talk. We gathered in His name and for His glory. It felt like New Testament church. One brought a word, one brought a song, and one brought a prayer, all brought encouragement. Burdens were poured out as coffee filled our cups and His lavish love filled our hearts. God lifted the heaviness from us as we prayed for one another. We had great expectations of what God was doing in us.
Another early morning text was received and quickly answered by all. The conversation went like this:
L: Hot coffee and goodies available at 9:30 for any who can come. No school today.
S: Okay, I will bring spelt pancakes and maple syrup
M: Yes, and I will bring Florida strawberries and oranges.
L; God is coming to the party too!!!
M: What’s He bringing?
S: The Real Food.
L: Can’t wait to see!
One more January morning, He invited us to gather in His name and we accepted with great joy and anticipation. The frigid air outside meant nothing to us because the air inside was thick with His presence.
Our spirits were lifted and what seemed impossible, suddenly seemed very possible in His power. Laughter spilled out. Hope rose up. Wisdom was sought; confirmation was given. Truth was spoken. Challenges were shared. Iron sharpening iron was happening with no effort of ours. Big prayers were prayed and faith arose.
It was true; He always brings the real food. Our feast of bacon, pancakes, syrup, and fruit was delicious but seemed insignificant when placed on the table with His bounty including love, grace, mercy, forgiveness, truth, encouragement, and so much more.
We went our separate ways with bulging spirits; filled to the brim with the goodness of the Lord, ready to conquer anything.
Now that’s the sign of a good gathering; a God gathering. A cup filled to the brim with Him.
Another Cup Please!
Pull out a chair and sit a while. His table is overflowing. Everyone is welcome. He waits for you and the meal is always satisfying and filling.
Who do you need to invite to join you at the table? Be intentional! He is! It is wonderful.
Check out How to start intentional gatherings: Shoulder to Shoulder