If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. ~ Ecclesiastes 4:10 (NLT)
“I don’t need a spotter,” I remember telling one of my friends when I was working out in the gym. “I’ve got this.” So, my friend walked away and went to do his own exercise routine elsewhere. As I laid down on the weight bench, the bar perched above me, I realized that I had never attempted to lift such a heavy load. Sure, I’d been working out and getting stronger, but this was the first time I had tried to lift at this level of weight. I reached out and grabbed the bar and lifted it from the rack. It felt very heavy, but I was certain I could bench press this thing. So, I lowered the bar down to my chest then pushed hard to lift it up. It got about three inches off my chest and stopped. My arms began to shake, and the bar begin to slowly creep downward. No matter how hard I pushed, I couldn’t get it up. Eventually, the bar was resting on my chest and I could feel the weight pushing down on my ribs. It was making it hard to breathe. Suddenly, the bar lifted and restored itself to the rack. I sat up to see how this miracle had happened. There stood my friend, with a really goofy grin on his face. He saved me in a big way that day. And, I learned a valuable lesson. Having others to help you with heavy lifting isn’t just important, it’s necessary to survive.
It’s no different when it comes to our faith life. God calls us to belong to a community of other Christians, which He calls the church. So, what is the purpose of the church? Well, it’s two-fold really: 1) To help others come to know about Jesus Christ and invite them into our community; 2) To be an encouragement to one another and help with the heavy-lifting in life.
King Solomon, who was a pretty wise dude, wrote about the necessity of community and friendship in our verse today, “If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.” In other words, we aren’t meant to live in isolation – especially during difficult times in life – we are called to live in community with each other.
So today, and every day, engage with your community of believers. If you don’t have one, find one. Be an encouragement to others. Help people when they are struggling, and celebrate with them when they have victories. Become actively involved in the family of God.