Fellowship of the Heart

“And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.”‭‭Acts‬ ‭2:42‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I enjoy encouraging others in their walk with God. I have found that when I encourage others to walk with God, my walk is deepened and encouraged. Funny how that works.

Several years ago I actually wrote a book and self published it. It was a blast figuring out how to do all that. It was a big project.

The book discussed how my church helped people grow in their faith. Rivoting stuff, indeed! The church I attend has a way we connect members to small groups and Bible studies and to then 1:1 meetings. We lead people to study through many types of books and studies. The goal was to connect people to community and fellowship while helping them grow in their faith.

In my book, “Every Warrior a Leader” I broke down the difference between small groups and Bible studies, and discussed how meeting with someone 1:1 was one of the best ways to inspire people to grow a deeper walk with God.

Bible studies, I’m learning, are not generally meant to multiply. However, small groups are designed to develop new leaders who would then multiply and start new groups. It’s a great way to attempt to connect people to fellowship in a church. But I always steered people to 1:1 meetings. 1:1 meetings allows the leader to have his mentee’s undivided attention for a period of time once a week or so. Which I have found was so good!

Later, my buddies and I started holding retreats once or twice a year. This was another way we helped men learn about a key topic, the heart, through a weekend time of fellowship.

After each retreat we would encourage the guys to start their own Band of Brothers groups. These groups are special, because if led well, would incorporate leading men to live their fellowship in “The Four Streams.” Remember those? 

It’s interesting, last year, we had a key leader in our church retire. He directed our men’s ministry and small groups, and he would also help organize the 1:1 meetings and our retreats.

Since his retirement, I don’t hear much about small groups or 1:1 meetings and we stopped holding our retreats about two years ago. Since we haven’t replaced this key leader, my heart longs for the days when these ministries were humming!

What hasn’t stopped, is my Band of Brothers meetings. There are now just four of us meeting. We meet once a week and study a short devotion and talk about it. But, we also deeply minister to each other through the four streams. 

As I sit here and write this, I’m concluding this type of fellowship is rare in the church today. A lot of people attend church weekly, but are hiding. It’s like church attendance is a box to check or something. And I can’t help but think about all the people who might need an ear to listen and a heart that needs healing. Remember Jesus came to save our souls but He also came to heal the broken hearted and to set them free, free deep down in their souls. Makes me wish I would have been more intentional about leading people to the Four Streams. 

A Christian life lived in fellowship wading in the Four Streams is such an amazing thing to experience. It’s the kind of of fellowship I believe Jesus would want us to live in.

My Band of Brothers disciple each other, and help set each other’s hearts free from the wounds we have taken and disavow any agreements we have made to the false messages thrown our way. And then we actually go to battle against the spiritual war waging around us! This is a fellowship that is rare, but one that is so needed. 

I hope you find or even start your own Band of Brothers group and then wade deeply into the Four Streams together. It’s a kind of fellowship that is definitely something worth finding. And it strengthens our hearts profoundly.


2 thoughts on “Fellowship of the Heart”

  1. Great reminder of how God created us, and that is to be in relationship with others. It is so important that we develop close trusting God lead relationships with buddies for us to share life. What a great combo, to have a close relationship with God and to have trusted friends to provide spiritual support in times of need.
    Thanks Matt for sharing your thoughts.

    • You bet Bob! Thanks for being a trusted God fearing brother! I love the wisdom God has given you to share! So thankful for you and your friendship!

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