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HOW YOUR IDENTITY IS FORMED...

Dear Crosswalkers,

They (the early Christians) devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer (Acts 2:42 NIV).

I want to focus for a minute on the word fellowship in this verse. Our sense of identity comes in large part by our family. We become who we identity with!

God wants us to identify as members of his forever family! In fact, for a healthy soul this needs to be your primary identifier!

Fellowship expresses the kindred relationship we have in the church family. The word from the original Greek is koinonia, and it used to describe God’s vision for His family!  What does koinonia mean?

The heart of this word means “to have in common, to partner, to share.”  This is a rich word that bears witness to three things we hold in common.

First, it expresses what we share with each other—this is our mutual responsibility.  I believe this is the accountability we must hold each other to in living out the high calling of Christ to have all things in common with one another.  Sometimes, in a group it is easier to think that the other people should do it, but when we are able to hold each other accountable then we ensure that we are cooperating as the Body of Christ.

Second, it expresses what we share out together—this is our common service!  Built upon the foundation of Jesus Christ we are called to serve one another with our time, treasures, and talents, AND we are also called to rally together to reach out and help those that do not yet know Jesus Christ.

Third, it expresses what we share in together—this is our common inheritance! Fellowship is grounded in God and in our utter dependence upon Him for life. We have fellowship because of our common inheritance—the forgiveness of sins and life in God through Jesus Christ.

Here are two practical takeaways:

1. THIS SUNDAY we are beginning a new begin a new sermon series called COMMUNITY COUNTS! This series of studies will be from the book of James, which is known as the New Testament’s wisdom literature because of its practical value. Here is the early church going through the major challenges of life, and what James, who is the half-brother of our Lord Jesus, has to say will be of great encouragement to us. In the first message, from James 1, we will learn How a Community Faces Trials. Please plan to be with us, either in person or online, for this series!

2. Many of you who are local to the South Bay will be receiving, in a special email, the link to take part in our ALL-CHURCH SURVEY. This is a vital part of launching our season of transition. If you would like to participate and do not receive that special email later today, please let us know.

May your church family continue to inform your identity!
Be glad in the Lord!

Pastor John

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