Kion You (Brown '20); shared at fri gathering, Nov. 10, 2017.
What then shall we say, brothers and sisters? When you come together, each of you has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. Everything must be done so that the church may be built up. 1 Corinthians 14:26
Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity! Psalms 133:1
This year i’ve been going through the Corinthians and Psalms, and these two verses I think have stuck with me as an overarching theme for this season. These two verses have been critical in shaping how I started viewing christian fellowship at Brown this year.
It might be selfish, but unity and community have been things I have been craving this school year so much. My freshman year was undeniably tough—tough to adjust to college, but more importantly, tough to adjust spiritually. I went to church and RUF, but I had little connection with God outside of that. The summer was even worse—I was interning, then working as a camp counselor, then traveling, and I went to church but had no community to hold me in, no friends to pray for me and with me. To be honest, working alone in a big city as a transient was probably the lowest few months of my life. Trust is a big thing for me and hard for me to do, and as this year has progressed, I have begun to trust people in this fellowship so much more, and as a result, have felt more and more unity and grace each day. I’m so thankful that I began to do that.
I strongly, strongly believe that everyone in this room has something to contribute. This isn’t asking for any big demands, all its saying is a “hymn” or a “word of instruction.” And the Bible is straightforward in saying that this isn’t an option, but that “everything must be done” for the church to be strong in Christ. And this isn’t just something we’re doing for the sake of doing works and appearing Christian. The psalmist says “how good and pleasant it is” when we perform these acts together.
I want to encourage everyone, and myself of course, to be proactive in sharing the grace of God. Text your friends bible verses, or ask them for prayer requests. The strength and encouragement from Christian friends is at times the only thing carrying me through. People don’t really have any gusto or energy left by this time of the year, but God’s love and power is overflowing for us. Draw from that, and make Jesus a little bit more apparent each day in your social circles. Freshman, reach out to other freshman, but also reach out to upperclassmen, we need your help too. If you’re doing well, check up on other people. I’m so thankful for the people who have encouraged me in Christ this year, and I want to continue to encourage y’all to help me and help everyone else.