Lean In…and Connect with Others

1 Thessalonians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

1 Peter 4:8 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.

 

My wife, Kristi, and I were out for one of our Friday ‘date nights’ and happened to wander around at Downtown Disney. One of the feature stores is a Lego store. It attracts a lot of attention because of the Lego-style sculptures on the outside of the building: a brave knight fighting a fire breathing dragon, Buzz and Woody flying to “Infinity and Beyond,” and more. As you walk into the store you are taken back not only by the amazing and incredible Lego sets you can purchase, but taken back to your childhood as I was (because I love Legos!) to the fun we had creating and building. As you move to the back of the store, there are vats full of just plain Lego pieces in all colors and all sizes, some with a few snaps and some with many snaps. Now the thing about Legos is they were designed to snap together with other Legos. Yes, some have massive connection points, others have a few, yet all connecting. So ‘no Lego left behind,’ all are meant to connect and work into the grand plan of the kit purchased or the creative design of the freewheeling imagination of a kid, regardless of age.

 

We are a lot like Legos; designed to be connected with others.

Romans 12:10 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.

Romans 15:7 Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

Galatians 6:2 Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

John 13:34 A new commandment I (Jesus) give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.

These ‘one another’ Bible verses are written with action in mind, that we would lean in and choose to be loyal, attentive, helpful, and selflessly caring towards others. The truth is we need each other.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!

That Bible passage goes on to explain more in Ecclesiastes 4:11-12. The truth is God created us to connect so that we create an amazing story.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

 

However, we each have the choice not to put ourselves out there and keep to ourselves, not connecting. Yet, that can be lonely. Sure, we can say if people want to connect with me it will be on my terms. Yet, part of human interaction requires vulnerability, humility, authenticity, and availability. Of course we need to be discerning, as there are ‘unsafe’ people out there that are users and abusers. But there are good people to connect with.

Hebrews 10:24-25 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

1 Peter 4:9-10 Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:

 

So who could you lean in and connect with this week? Maybe you could reach out and connect with a long lost friend or past acquaintance, maybe a family member, or that new neighbor down the street. It could be that family your child is friends with at school or in soccer. There are all kinds of possibilities. Now sure, some snaps take some time and a lot of tries to find the best fit, but the key is to keep leaning into it, to lean in and connect with others.

 

Church can be a great place to lean in and connect with others. Now it’s not a guarantee and we all still need to try, but church is a place designed to connect people to God and to each other. If you don’t already have a church you regularly connect with, we would like to invite you to Cypress Church or any of our branch churches. We are in the midst of a Bible teaching series called “Leaning in – Experiencing God in everyday life”. Our website has more information: http://www.cypresschurch.net. It would be great to connect with you!

 

Leaning in and looking for those ‘snaps’ of connection along with you,

 

Mike

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