Lonesome and forlorn she stood at the counter elbow deep in warm dish water, on the verge of weeping. Not certain as to what was bothering her she prayed for the Lord to meet her.  After praying, she felt a little better… she had a little more self-control over her overwhelming urge to cry. Later in the day she rested as the little ones napped, she woke before they did and disciplined herself to read the Word. Though she had read the word, spent time with the Lord, still something was bothering her. For days this went on. Listening to worship in the home helped her to focus on Him, and not the real issue. She felt alone.

As stay at home mothers we have all had these days, weeks and even seasons of loneliness haven’t we? For the longest time I thought that I was the only one that struggled with loneliness. That there was something wrong with me that no matter how much time I spent in the Word, no matter how much time I spent praying I still felt alone.

Alone! Crazy I thought to myself! I am a stay at home mom, who home schools. My kids are with me all day. And my husband is so good at trying to connect when he gets home. Why did I feel this hole? 

For years I thought, it must be a God hole in my heart that only He can fill. But as I have grown in my relationship with Him and knowledge of His word with regard to the Body of Christ, I have found that God has designed us for authentic community. He designed us to have fellowship with one another, to delight in one another, to worship and serve together, to cry and laugh with one another, to encourage and pray for one another, and if we do not experience this… we will have a hole in our heart, a hole in our lives. God is in His people and one way he has chosen to minister to His people is through the Body of Christ, the people. But if we do not take initiative and pursue community it will not just happen.

It is our responsibility to initiate community. I am not saying that community should ever take the place of God, and many do run to people first rather than God… I am not advocating that. I am however suggesting that if we do not have authentic community in our lives that it may be because we have not pursued it.

Authentic Christ-centered community can enrich all of our lives, including our relationship with Christ. It is in real community that we share who we are, what we are struggling with and can be held accountable for those sins and issues we struggle with most. It is through conflict and reconciliation we learn more about grace and are sanctified into becoming more holy.

I pray that this Christmas season you would be blessed by your community and that you would be uplifted and encouraged!

I thank the Lord for the gift of other people and friendship today! Don’t you?

Let’s all take action to have authentic relationships that glorify the Father who created us!

Blessings in the Lord,

Angie Tolpin