Earlier this week I had the joy of sitting with my brother and my two sons over a breakfast table for fellowship. We try to get together once or twice a year to talk about the state of our lives spiritually and the state of the work of God in America. Specifically, there were four topics we discussed this week:

  1. We talked about recent blessings from the Word of God. Each of us shared blessings we’ve recently received from our personal devotions. I spoke of my studies in Chronicles on the life of David. My brother Stephen talked about studying the epistle of Romans and grace. Larry shared what he is learning from Psalms. And Matthew spoke of how the Lord is speaking to him through the book of Daniel.
  2. We talked about current challenges we’re facing. We exchanged ideas on building programs. We talked about the challenges of ministry in a shifting culture. And we talked about best practices to help people to grow in discipleship.
  3. We talked about positional issues. We talked about trends of contemporary theology and the importance of maintaining a biblical stand in this day of change. I shared my heart to lead a ministry with an intentionally conservative stance—not only for our church family but also because of the stewardship of a Bible college.
  4. We talked about our hopes and goals for the future. Each of us shared some of the things we’re hopeful for. I shared my hopes for my children and grandchildren and for what I’m asking the Lord to do in in our ministry. We also shared personal goals with one another.

What a tremendous blessing this time of fellowship was for me! I’m thankful it was with family—that my brother and sons are godly men who enjoy speaking about things of the Lord. But whether it is with family or not, it’s a worthy model for any group of preachers.

Has it been a while since you have engaged in intentional fellowship? Call a few godly friends, and plan a time to get together and encourage one another in the work of the ministry. Ask each other about recent blessings from your personal devotional time, current challenges in ministry, positional issues, and hopes and goals for the future. You’ll be encouraged and edified and will be able to encourage and edify others all at the same time!

Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.—Proverbs 27:17

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