Are you too busy for a girls’ night out? Can’t take time to catch up on the phone? When was the last time you had lunch with a trusted friend? Are you skipping Ladies’ Bible study because you’ve been told recently that you need to prune activities from your busy schedule?
If you see yourself in any of these examples, you are letting a busy world steal from you the blessings that come from fellowship.
It really is that simple. God wants to bless you through community with his people. Are you too busy to accept his invitation?
Today in my Bible study time I read Acts chapter 16; the story of the beginnings of the New Testament church. Wow! There is so much in this little portion of scripture! You could study it for weeks and come away with a lifetime of wisdom.
But for today, my mind is stuck on one little thing I noticed.
It’s a woman who took time to go to the river.
Meet Lydia; seller of purple cloth, worshipper of God, hostess to missionaries, and Paul’s first European convert.
We can ascertain that Lydia was a successful business woman. (Purple cloth was not cheap.) She had servants, and a house nice enough and large enough to host Paul and his companions when they were released from prison. She may have even hosted the missionaries on other occasions as well. It takes time to run a successful business, oversee the management of a home, and maintain one’s respectful standing in society. It would be easy to become so consumed with it all that there would be no time for going to the river to pray.
And yet, she came to the river.
She was there with the other women who had come to pray. And she listened with an open heart when Paul showed up and taught them the Gospel of Jesus Christ. God opened her heart (taught her the things she didn’t understand) and she responded. She then shared her faith with her household and became the first woman to host missionaries of the gospel.
She could have prayed at home. At that point she wasn’t even a Christian. She worshipped God, but had not heard the gospel. What made her go to the river? Why was it worth her time, given how busy she must have been? What made it worth possibly losing her standing in the community by being seen with this traveling band of strangers?
If she had skipped coming to the river that day, she would have missed so much; but instead, her life was forever changed.
- She met Paul (!!!), as well as Silas, Timothy and Luke and perhaps others.
- Not only did she meet Paul, but she got to learn the Gospel of Christ straight from Paul’s mouth!
- She had so much faith in this Gospel she had just learned, that she shared it with her family and got to watch them come to belief as well!
- She was able to open her home and provide for Paul and his companions.
- She went on to be a close friend to Paul and to his ministry.
All because she took the time to go to the river.
Are you taking the time to go to the river?
Let me rephrase that to get us up to the 21st century.
When was the last time you took the time to connect with Christ-following women?
I mean really connect.
I mean taking the time away from all the stuff you do (much of it for the glory of God) and participating in mutual edification with a friend or friends.
You can certainly study and pray at home. Alone.
You can definitely serve God with all the wonderful things you’ve got going on.
But, my question to you is; can you connect with every blessing God has for you without connecting with His children? <<–Tweet That))
Or do you need to set some stuff aside and take a trip to the river?
Why not put some “connect time” on your calendar right now?
It’s easy to read a post like this and feel a resolve to do better, because you know how immensely you’ll be blessed. You have to do something about it now, before you go back to your busy life. Call a friend right now and schedule a lunch. Get several girl friends together for an evening away from all of the demands.
God has so much for you, wrapped up in the package of community. Won’t you take the time to discover these blessings, like Lydia did?
Top photo @ karelnoppe at DollarPhotoClub.com