Friday, March 24, 2006


“Holy chit chat” is what happens after church while people are having some coffee and goodies. What use to be called the “coffee hour” is, now, more commonly called “the fellowship time.” Does true, biblical fellowship occur during that time? Or, is biblical fellowship so much more than what typically happens after church?

True biblical fellowship involves participation in the life of another individual or group of individuals. In fellowship we learn and experience another person’s growing edge—where God is changing their life, where they are struggling and need our prayers, where we talk about what they are learning from scripture, etc. True fellowship is where we get to know another believer so well that we walk with them through all that comes at them in life.

Typically, at the “coffee time” following worship there isn’t the time or setting necessary for the kinds of conversations and sharing to place that would classify as biblical fellowship. It does lay the ground work for fellowship to occur.

It is possible for the coffee time to be “fellowship” time but it comes with a cost. The cost is the neglect of new people to the church. Think of a small rural congregation for a moment. This imaginary church has had the same core of people in their midst for decades. New people begin attending the church. The new comers leave the church after a month or two because they have no friends at the church. They feel the church is “cold” and unfriendly. The church members feel their church is warm and friendly since they enjoy the time that they spend with their friends. The newcomers never experienced fellowship at the church.

The Purpose Driven model stresses that small groups are the most effective way to bring about fellowship. People study together. People laugh together. People pray together. People support other group members who are experiencing difficult times. Group members feel love and cared for. Fellowship is happening.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home