For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you. (Philemon 1:7 ESV)
What would it take for the Apostle Paul to say that about you? In what ways are you pouring love into the church? Are you refreshing the souls of saints with encouragement, affirmations, and prayer?
To experience the fullness of life with God, we need to be in community with other believers. I heard a pastor once say that if your are not part of the body, then you are disconnected from the Head, who is Jesus Christ. We are not called to be critical of the church and complain about it. It is full of sinners, and so we must expect that it will be a little messy. Yes, Jesus died for them all and even your worst enemy. With that said, we are charged with the duty of building it up and strengthening it. Bringing joy and comfort through acts of love is what pleases and glorifies to God. People are drawn to kindness more than they are rudeness.
Are people happy to see you when you walk into the room, or do they suddenly shift with uneasiness? Remember, the fruits of the Spirit are meant to be shared with people because they are what enrich and enhance our relationships. So don’t keep them locked in the closet of your prayer room. Bring them out and distribute them into your community. The Lord will be sure to bless the work you put forth in your own mission field.