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  • Writer's pictureRichard Parrish

Together is Better

Last week I slowly read through the book of Acts, which describes the true sequel of Christ’s disciples, after his death and resurrection.

It was good to re-visit the early church and see that they, too were often confused, struggled, and seemed perplexed. It’s not that I am happy they were, but in some small way, it brought encouragement to me.

Many churches and ministries today recognize the challenge and conflicts of serving in a post-Christian world. What used to work has somehow lost its power. Like the early church, discovering how to advance the kingdom of God was often problematic.

Cultural, racial, political, and religious influences pressed heavily upon the early church, encouraging them to conform to others’ expectations and submit to defeat. Financial pressures were real, and persecution quickly separated the interested from the committed.

Sounds similar to the 21st-century church, doesn’t it? However, desperate conditions often reveal our most profound devotion.

The early disciples (followers of Jesus) provide us 21st-century disciples a beautiful example worth replicating. Despite our challenge, we must remain devoted to the Word of God, to prayer, the breaking of bread, and fellowship (Acts 2:42).

These practices (devotion to the Word, prayer, breaking of bread, and fellowship) unite fledgling disciples (whether in the 1st or 21st-century). These disciplines empower life, reveal clarity in confusion, and are instrumental in bolstering courage when fear overpowers faith.

You can’t read The Acts of the Apostles without being reminded that the Holy Spirit continues to empower God’s church and that together is better.

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