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The Community of Believers

By Carol Onyett
 
Saturday, Feb. 20, 2010

Scripture Verses
Acts 2:42-47, 4:32-36

42 The believers studied what the apostles taught. They shared life together. They broke bread and ate together. And they prayed. 43 Everyone felt that God was near. The apostles did many wonders and miraculous signs. 44 All the believers were together. They shared everything they had. 45 They sold what they owned. They gave each other everything they needed. 46 Every day they met together in the temple courtyard. In their homes they broke bread and ate together. Their hearts were glad and honest and true. 47 They praised God. They were respected by all the people. Every day the Lord added to their group those who were being saved. 

Acts 4:32-36
 32 All the believers were agreed in heart and mind. They didn't claim that anything they had was their own. They shared everything they owned. 33 With great power the apostles continued their teaching. They gave witness that the Lord Jesus had risen from the dead. And they were greatly blessed by God.

 34 There were no needy persons among them. From time to time, those who owned land or houses sold them. They brought the money from the sales. 35 They put it down at the apostles' feet. It was then given out to anyone who needed it.

 36 Joseph was a Levite from Cyprus. The apostles called him Barnabas. The name Barnabas means Son of Help.

Devotion
As Christians we are bound together by the love of God into a community that worships and prays together and feels a kinship with and responsibility for each other.  We practice the same religious habits and participate in a fellowship with one another.

We know that in our community of believers there are those we can turn to in times of grief, loneliness, need, and even when we are overwhelmed by the problems encountered in our lives.  The community of believers is here and available to each of us.  There will be times when we are the one who is strong and can help others and times when we need to reach out for help.  The church as a community is a vital source in the life of the believer.

It becomes clear that by ourselves we are limited in meeting the needs of others. But in a community with other believers in our church, we are able to do great things.  Alone an individual could not have built a church in Africa, but as a community Mt. Auburn was able to build Trinity United Methodist Church in Uganda. We were also able to complete phase one of our own building program.  As a community we can help those in need. We can do so by supporting the Inter-Church Food Pantry, the Lord's Locker, Fletcher Place, and other ministries.  In a larger sense through our church's connectional system and UMCOR we send funds to Haiti and others who are experiencing catastrophes. 

Jesus called us to be a community of believers and each of us is an important part of the community.

Prayer
Father, we are grateful for each friend in our fellowship and for the privilege of joining others of like mind and faith. We ask for your guidance in our walk with them and with you. Amen