|Photo: Gözde Otman
Arriving home from school for the summer, I was excited to get a call from my friend Anna*. She had recently started a Bible study with several friends and invited me to join them. The first week we met in a little city park and I’m sure we made an interesting sight: five or six girls, ranging from late teens to late twenties, and from obviously different religious backgrounds, talking, laughing, and studying together. There was myself, in jeans, my Reformed Baptist friend in a long skirt and sweater, and several Mennonite girls in traditional cape dress and white covering. As we talked and studied together, our different backgrounds brought a variety of thoughts and insights.
We are going through the books of Esther and Ruth. Each of us has grown up hearing different thoughts on the stories and I have been richly blessed by learning from them. Whether we’re talking about Biblical womanhood, the value of integrity and honesty, or God’s plan for our lives, there is fresh energy and inspiration from sharing with others who share a passion to seek God. Although we have many differences, our similar passion to know God brings us together and allows us to learn and be blessed by each other. In addition, we share interests as young women—questions about our future, plans for our lives, relationships, and more. In talking and sharing, I am beginning to realize how much, we as young women, have similar problems and experiences behind the façade of outward differences.
Accountability to Christian Friends
Do you have fellowship? Perhaps like me, you attend church regularly, but you may feel lost and without connections in the larger sphere of the church. Although weekly fellowship and community at church is an important part of our walk with God, I believe that He wants us to have closer fellowship and accountability with Christian friends as well.
God speaks of this, saying, “As iron sharpens iron,so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend” (Proverbs 27:17). We need opportunity to build friendships with others, for encouragement, for building each other up, and even simply for fun. Small groups like this allow us to see others with struggles like ours, with interests like ours, all striving to serve the Lord. It helps us move forward in our walk with Jesus when we see others beside us, also seeking to follow Him.
I’m enjoying my summer Bible study, but fellowship comes in many different ways. Last school year, I was part of a small group of students that met weekly. Maybe your church has a young adult group that meets together or perhaps you have a few friends that you could invite to meet with you regularly for fellowship and study.
I believe that this type of fellowship is something God wants us to have. It may not always be easy to find, but I’d encourage you to seek it out, asking God to lead you. He can and will bring you the fellowship you need.