All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in
meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer.
Acts 2:42 (NLT)
This will date me, but when I was growing up I loved the Carol Burnett Show. This variety show featured some of the greatest comedy sketches ever performed (seriously, if you haven’t seen ‘Went With The Wind’, you need to Google it NOW). The humor was broad, the comedy over the top of the top, and you could tell that the tight-knit cast were having as much fun as the audience. And at the end of every show, Ms. Burnett would come out alone and sing this lovely farewell song.
I’m so glad we had this time together,
Just to have a laugh or sing a song.
Seems we just get started, and before you know it,
It’s the time we have to say, “So long”.
Right about now you are probably wondering, “What does this have to do with the Healing Ministry?” Well, I’ll tell you. I think this feeling of love, and laughter, and a tight-knot camaraderie is exactly what an early Christian church service would have been like. It is a blueprint of what happens when ‘Jesus People’ get together.
The second chapter of Acts describes a community of followers meeting together to learn, to eat, and to pray. Though Luke didn’t specifically note it, I’m sure there was a great deal of laughter, and also some pretty rude jokes (these were, after all, Greeks and Italians). These guys and gals were under a death threat, yet their community was so essential to them that they risked everything—EVEN THEIR LIVES—to gather together in the name of the Lord.
Throughout the world, many Christians still face persecution over gathering together in Christ’s name. We’re extremely blessed in this country to have the freedom to worship, but I think this freedom has made us complacent. And that’s a shame, because something spectacular happens when believers get together. I see it at our weekly Healing Services, where people come to worship, to talk about what God is doing in their lives and to ask for His help. We share the Lord’s Supper together (though we welcome everyone, even if you don’t take Communion). People are fed and people are healed. There are smiles and tears, but at the heart there is fellowship. And that fellowship is something that delights our Creator.
If you don’t have a church home, I encourage you to find one. If you are in the Central Florida area, I invite you try out the Tuesday night Healing Services at All Saints Church, Winter Park, or the monthly noon services at the Glennon House. We learn, laugh, share and cry together, but most of all we gather in the name of the Lord.
But whether you gather in a church, a cathedral, or someone’s kitchen, it is my hope that, when you leave, you will feel like the viewers did at the end of the Carol Burnett Show. Seems we just get started, and before you know it, It’s the time we have to say, “So long”.