Brother Jon
June 1, 2017

Relationships Matter: The Priority of Relationships within our Faith Family

“So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus.” —Philippians 2:1-5

We all know relationships matter. The question is how we can improve our relationships. Here at First Baptist, we continue to focus our effort and attention toward creating environments for people to relate to one another. We value relationships over programs and time spent together growing in Christ over the mere doing business of the church.

It is the relationship that we know you will remember 20 years from now. So, we are focusing on how we build relationships for many reasons. The main reason is that we honestly believe that the best way to make disciples is through relationships with others - through giving and receiving sacrificial love and through truly learning how to love God with all of our heart, mind, soul, and strength, and through learning to love our neighbor as ourselves.

Programs and processes seem efficient and they are valuable and needed. We will continue to build our process here to move people into meaningful relationships. However, programs should never replace relationships as the glue that holds a church together. Philippians 2:1-5 helps us see the missing key to how we are to have relationships with one another. It tells us that if we have received anything at all from the Holy Spirit, then there should be a result that turns us toward others with Christ as our example. We should be unified together and we should put the needs of others ahead of our own. We should consider others better than ourselves and we should be one in spirit and purpose. All of this would take a miracle, but with the Spirit of God at work within us, living this way actually becomes natural. Putting one another first - ahead of ourselves - is actually the normal way that Christians should live.

This means that we spend time together. We communicate with one another. We forgive each other. We make time to see each other. We listen. We care about others beyond what we can get from one another. So often, human relationships are based on what we think we can get from a person. But, God does not see us this way. He says we each have inherent value because He created us and we are loved by Him. We should see one another the same way. So, Faith Family, how are our relationships? What about the people you see in church, but you do not know very well? How might God use you to be a blessing to others in desperate need of encouragement? I’m praying that this summer will be a time of relational renewal as we learn to value others, love sacrificially, and put the needs of others above our own.







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