The immaculately arranged wooden boxes showcased generous slices of raw tuna and salmon, nestled atop a glistening bed of finely cut white radish and green shiso leaves. Our eyes opened wide in delight as we gazed upon this delectable dish. I was dining with two dear brothers in the Lord who had previously dined at this restaurant for lunch. However, to their dismay, they discovered this sashimi presentation was only available for dinner. This was our first dinner together at this restaurant and we came to dine on this prized dish. Grinning, my friend who organized the dinner turned to both of us and said, “This is what we were missing!”
This dinner was the start of our men’s fellowship. For the past year, the three of us met on a regular basis to share our spiritual concerns and pray for one another. We have been friends for many years, our three families sharing many meals together and even vacationing together. We were all believers for many years and shared many common spiritual goals. Yet it was not until one of them suggested to have a meeting of only the men, to support one another and hold each other accountable to God, that this men’s fellowship began.
This fellowship, unlike previous meetings, extended far longer than our usual meal. For 7 hours, we shared our deepest fears and aspirations with each other. We received grace and mercy from one another after confessing and repenting of our sins to God. We knew something special was happening as the Holy Spirit guided our conversations. We were meeting Jesus Christ where He meets us, in the depths of our pain and suffering.
A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.
Ecclesiastes 4:12 (NLT)
I have attended numerous Bible studies and joined fellowship and support groups, having the privilege to meet many amazing and committed brothers and sisters in our Lord Jesus Christ. Yet, this fellowship with my two brothers was a much deeper connection that I had ever previously experienced. For over three years I had regularly prayed that God would lead me to like-minded brothers in Jesus Christ, developing a deeper relationship. When my prayer was not immediately answered by God, I questioned God’s timing. Why wouldn’t He grant my prayer? Shouldn’t He be pleased that I was seeking this? Yes. In His perfect timing, God’s sovereign grace was moving the broken pieces of my life and my brothers in harmony. We first became friends through our spouses and family. Through a series of difficult life experiences, God weaved our lives together to meet at this critical juncture in our lives.
This is what I was missing!
Thank you, God, for answering my prayers with your timing, not mine.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.