On Monday, I meet with fellow Presbyterians to study
the scriptures for the week. On Thursdays, I meet with pastors of
the Antioch/Priest Lake area of all kinds of denominational
variety to pray for the area and each other. I share a meal with
both groups.

I suppose I don’t need other pastors to study the Bible and
to pray. I could just lock myself up in my office, take the phone
of the hook, and do both in solitude. Certainly, solitude is
necessary at times in the week. However, I have found that
studying with others and praying with others yields much greater
results. It gets me beyond myself and my own experience. It
stretches me as a pastor and as a disciple.

I often imagine the disciples and Jesus sitting in a circle in
prayer and study and sharing some food and drink. I suppose
Jesus could have called his disciples and then told them to simply
stay at home and do homework, but that’s not how Jesus works.
Jesus and his band of disciples were a road show. They
didn’t stay anywhere for very long. Their environment changed
from day-to-day. They didn’t do anything on their own. They
did just about everything in community with each other and with
Jesus.

I believe that the Bible was meant to be read as a
community. The Spirit works through and among each of the
members and the fullness of the Word shines forth. When we
pray in community we hear a greater breadth of need and joy. It
takes us out of our own little ruts.

Consider expanding your circles of study and prayer. Allow the Spirit to shape you through community
that is available to us all!

Why eat alone when you could eat with
someone else?

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