Summary: Adapted from the Purpose Driven life sermons

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How can we do that in a world that is full of hate and isolation? When one becomes a Christian it is because he believes in Christ and leads a new life not under the bondage to sin and the devil. Now that one has become a part of God’s family it means that we belong to a family and need to have family relationships. To be in a family means that we care for one another. I like my wife; she baked a coffee cake this week for me. It made me feel special. We need that more and more in this day to make people feel special. So it in this church that you are loved and each time we meet we love each other more and more. This church is here to make people feel loved. 1 Tim. 3:14-15 “I am writing these things to you now so you will know how to live in the household of God. This is the church of the living God.” How to live is the key in this verse. Let us take time to read Rom. 12:9-16 to build on five ways that fellowship will help each of us to live with the family of God.

1. WE MUST KNOW THAT FELLOWSHIP IN WHICH WE ARE REAL. We could say to be authentic. It says right here in vs 9 “Love must be sincere.” We could say love must not be with hypocrisy. That means we do not wear a mask. In the theater world people wear masks to show a character that is not really them. In the next scene or next presentation they could play a different character from what they were by wearing a different mask. They call this being a hypocrite because they keep changing who they really are. What this verse is saying, “Love does not wear a mask.” If you are to really love you have to be yourself and not act as though you love when you really don’t. When you are in true fellowship you share your true feelings. Let us look at 1 JN 1:7, 8. We really do not fool others we are only fooling ourselves. This would mean that we can admit that we have weaknesses that we have sinned, that we make mistakes. When one walks in the darkness he tries to hide things and does not want others to see blunders or failures or blemishes. If we are truthful we do not hide in the darkness but are free to let others know the real us. If we are living in the light of God’s Word we will not want to hide our faults. If we want true healing we must reveal who we really are. The recovery ministries that are around put it out in this way so if you are involved you first must admit who you are and your need. So one can say, “This is who I am and this is where I am at in my life.” We can not hide from what God’s word says in HEB 4:12. To be real you it will not come through therapy, being sentimental, or revealing our life to a psychiatrist. It only comes as we let ourselves be touched by the living word of God. That is the reason this church is here. It is here you are exposed to the word of God and you have to do something because you can not hear the word of God and remain unchanged. You will either receive new light and walk in it or close your ears and be in the darkness. Our first way to fellowship is being real. ARE YOU BEING REAL OR IS THE REAL YOU HIDING BEHIND A MASK?

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