Today I found out that a good friend at church passed away after suffering for several years with physical ailments. She had ended her treatment last week because, in her words, she was “not lengthening her life, but prolonging death.”
As I sent word to my church family I gave thanks for her as a faithful servant but also mentioned what a blessing our church family has been. My friend had served as a deaconess and done many other things even through her difficulties and, in turn, was helped by several people within our church. As I think about it, it is that kind of humbling existence that points us all to our need for Christ and each other.
I have heard it often said that God never meant for us to be “Lone Ranger” Christians and that he ordained the church as an institution to point to our neediness. I strongly believe that and am thankful for the people who have ministered to me in my local church and also for the opportunities I’ve had to minister to others there. God is good in giving us the local church.