I read this today, on a website that was recommended at a meeting I went to this morning.  The article is looking at concepts of community.  It’s a subject I rarely tire of, and this is a brilliant quote which has got me a-pondering:

Socialists such as William Morris talked … of ‘fellowship’:

Fellowship is heaven, and lack of fellowship is hell; fellowship is life, and lack of fellowship is death; and the deeds that ye do upon the earth, it is for fellowship’s sake ye do them. (A Dream of John Ball, Ch. 4; first published in The Commonweal 1886/7)

Smith, M. K. (2001) ‘Community’ in the encyclopedia of informal education, http://www.infed.org/community/community.htm.

I think this means fellowship in the sense of ‘being-togetherness’, and also in the sense of sharing common ground in our values.  And it raises the question of why do we do the things we do?  From the perspective of living out my faith, there are many things I do to continue ‘in fellowship with’ my fellow believers, and with Jesus.  And many things I do because, fundamentally, as a human being I was made that way.  And to continue to seek to live in fellowship means to be constantly reaffirming that I am a human being, and part of the large family of human-kind, where we are all of equal value, equally flawed, and under God equally loved.

I have to say I really do think that ‘fellowship is heaven’.  In many ways I like my own company a lot, but there is something uniquely edifying and liberating about spending time in the company of those who you share that common ground with.  Even when you don’t agree on every point!  (I do love a good debate, and don’t think that precludes sharing common ground necessarily)

So for this reason, I can’t wait for tomorrow night, when our wee small group from church meet here in our home, to share a meal together and experience a little bit of heaven!  They are an amazing bunch of folk.  The kettle’s on, guys!