In The Purpose Driven Life, Rick Warren writes, "God intends for us to experience life together. The Bible calls this fellowship … real fellowship is so much more than just showing up at services … It includes unselfish loving, honest sharing, practical serving, sacrificial giving, sympathetic comforting, and all the other 'one another' commands found in the New Testament."
I had to learn that truth the hard way.
My philosophy of life was primarily shaped by my life experience. I grew up in a single parent home with my two older sisters, a cousin, a widowed aunt, and my mom, who worked her fingers to the bone, trying to make ends meet. Since my mom worked around the clock and my father showed up once a year at Christmas, usually drunk, I was on my own most of the time. I defined my success by accomplishments, acquiring things, and making money.
"Even the Lone Ranger had Tonto," Warren writes in his book. But I didn't, which made me believe that if I was going to succeed in life, I would have to do it on my own strength. I didn't believe anyone else would be willing to help me—especially God.
One day, a girl I had been dating for several years told me she had found Jesus. Because of that event, my life took a significant turn.
Reluctantly, I decided to join a few guys who were doing a Bible study on the life of Christ. I'd never talked openly about the Bible, Jesus, and what it meant to have a relationship with him. Those five guys were so gracious with my cynical attitude, challenging questions, and fears about placing my trust in a God I couldn't see. They could imagine how scary it was to trust a heavenly father after growing up with a very distant ...