Last month I was privileged to head out on the Battle Cry Tour with Apostolic artists Cortt Chavis and James Wilson and an amazing team of people. It was, what we considered, a ground-breaking event in the Apostolic movement for our generation, and God completely blew our minds with what took place in each city we visited.
Almost 25 of us loaded up onto vans and spent a week together.
And at the end of the week . . . we still loved each other!
Well, it shouldn’t be.
One theme that consistently showed up in our conversations, and was proven by our time together, was the value of community. The importance of surrounding yourself with people who challenge you, are better than you, and are passionate about the same things you are.
Not just any people, but those of like-minded faith.
Proverbs 27:17 tells us, “Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.”
I found this to be true on the Battle Cry Tour!
I was strengthened, encouraged, challenged, and energized by being around a group of, not just talented, but spiritual individuals.
We should strive to surround ourselves with people like that! And, the church should be the place where we can find this kind of community.
If you don’t feel a sense of community where you are, ask yourself how you can change that! Maybe you haven’t allowed yourself to really connect with your local congregation. Maybe someone, like you, needs to take the lead and intentionally foster a sense of community.
Community should also extend beyond your local church!
Who are you connected to that challenges you?
Who are the people in your life that set the bar a little higher and give you something to reach for?
If you don’t have people who do this for you, then you are missing a huge opportunity for growth!
This kind of community may not be found in your backyard, but you do have access to it.
Go to events where you connect with people who energize you. If you’re a worship leader, that may be a music conference. It may also mean being intentional about connecting with other worship leaders in your area. Plan a monthly lunch or coffee date, or maybe a time to brainstorm and share ideas.
If you’re an entrepreneur, connect with other women who are starting or growing their own businesses. Support and encourage them, learn from them, and share with them.
Distance is no longer a barrier to community.
Technology has provided us with ways to stay connected. Use these tools to your advantage. Plan a monthly group Skype, create a Facebook group (I’m part of one for ministers wives that I really enjoy), or maybe just take the time to make a phone call and have a conversation with a mentor or friend.
We need each other!
We need people in our lives that challenge us and push us toward excellence in everything we do. And we also need to be that person for someone else.
If iron sharpens iron, who is sharpening you?
And who are you sharpening?
Share in the comments about a time when community made a difference in your life.