We would probably all say that we desire to honor God. Who would deny this? But in reality, many Christians have deceived themselves into thinking that they can actually live a life that honors God apart from being in continual relationships with the body of Christ.
Many would say that this is an overstatement. After all, every one of us has relationships. But I’m talking about something deeper than getting together with people for dinner once every few weeks. This level of interaction may be a blessing to us, but it simply does not fulfill what the Bible calls us to. Really, this type of interaction doesn’t give us anything more than a progress report. But if we were to develop deep, regular relationships with other people, then we would have opportunities to practice the “one anothers” of Scripture.
We run into this problem because we exalt independence. As a culture we esteem independence—it has become one of our main measures of success. But our exaltation of independence actually hinders the body of Christ from functioning in the way that God desires.
Do you realize that it is impossible to live a life that honors God on your own? In order for us to fulfill the commands of Christ we must be in true relationship with other believers. We need to reject our culture’s exaltation of independence and finally humble ourselves and express our need for the body.
It comes down to this: you cannot “one another” yourself. The Bible is full of commands to do various things for one another. The inescapable solution to the dilemma is this: we need each other. In order to be and do what God has called us to be and do, we must renounce individuality and embrace community.
You can start this process in two ways: (1) Identify someone who has a need and do what you can to help them out, or (2) Identify some of your own needs or weaknesses and bring other people into the process. Our arrogance is the only complicating factor. When we actually begin doing this, we will find that this is exactly how we were meant to live.