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Communal and Personal

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, ...that he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being,  so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, ...may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. (Ephesians 2:14-19)

The local church holds a profound place in our lives, and rightfully so. It is where Sundays are infused with the wonders of worship and fellowship, where ministry involvement enriches our spiritual journey, and where ongoing education through sermons, teachings, and Bible studies deepens our understanding of God's Word.


Moreover, the local church offers stability and lasting friendships in a transient world. While relationships with classmates and colleagues may change over time, the bonds forged within the church community endure, providing a lifetime of support and companionship. These connections, intertwined with familial and network relationships, create a rich and enduring community that spans generations.


In Singapore, we are blessed with a myriad of local church communities, each offering a unique blend of language, location, and worship styles. While these factors may shape our initial participation, it is ultimately the sense of belonging and community life that binds us together.


And as Anglicans, there can also be rich inter-church relationships and ministries. Some of these also extends overseas with the six deaneries providing a further network for mission and ministry.


So much more can be said about the local church. I am only mentioning the tip of the iceberg here. It was Cyprian, one of the famous early church fathers who said “He can no longer have God for his Father, who has not the Church for his mother.” 

However, as we reflect on the profound role of the local church in our lives, let us remember that our spiritual journey is both communal and personal.


You need to spend time with God daily and find His presence in the world you live, study or work in. You need to guard your heart. "Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life,” Proverbs 4:23 says. This wellspring of life can be corrupted by sin and guilt or dissipated by anxiety. There is a lot of awareness of the importance of mental health these days but that is just another way of putting it. Our personal health - physical, mental or spiritual - matters. As a young Christian, I once read this in a Christian bookmark (bookmarks were all the rage in those days): If God seems far away, guess who moved."


The words of St Paul above is a reminder of what is at the heart of it all. There are various ways in which we can guard and cultivate our personal walk and faith with Christ.


I will share more on this at another time.



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