Sunday Reflections – Connection is Crucial for Victory

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The topic of connection is not a new one for Struggle to Victory. Just type the word “connect” or “connecting” or “connection” into the search box on the right hand side, and quite a few posts show up. Some, like No Man is an Island, directly addresses the topic of connection, while other posts address it indirectly or as a sub-topic.

The reason for this topic coming up so frequently lay with my belief that connection is crucial to finishing the race victoriously. Without connection, even people with great spiritual insight can still be turned from God.

In James 5: 13-20, James emphasizes the importance of connection to God and to other Christians. In this passage, connection specifically through prayer stands out as the way in which “a righteous person has great power and wonderful results.”

But the importance of connection shows up in a lot of other ways too. In his many letters, Paul continually expressed longing to be with those he knew would encourage him and who he knew supported him. And members of the early church met daily because they needed the encouragement to endure persecution that only connection with each other could bring.

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Conversely, an avoidance of connection often indicates a larger problem. Jonah did his very best to avoid responsibility by running away and disconnecting.  Moses gives another example of someone who ran away and disconnected in order to avoid the consequences of his mistakes. Fortunately, God still used them. Notably though, one got reconnected and went on to be used even more by God, and the other didn’t and was never heard from him again.

Not only does the importance of connection evidence itself in a person’s spiritual life, connection with others on a regular basis is crucial to a person’s physical health too.

On a very personal level, this melancholy introvert must deliberately seek out regular connection in order to keep depression, both a significantly mental and physical battle, at bay.

Need hard proof? Here’s what the experts at Psychology Today have to say about the importance of connection.

  • Social connection improves physical health and psychological well-being.
  • Lack of social connection is a greater detriment to health than obesitysmoking and high blood pressure.
  • Strong social connection leads to a 50% increased chance of longevity.
  • Social connection strengthens our immune system, helps us recover from disease faster, and may even lengthen our life.
  • People who feel more connected to others have lower rates of anxiety and depression.
  • People who feel more connected also have higher self-esteem, are more empathic to others, more trusting and cooperative and, as a consequence, others are more open to trusting and cooperating with them.

2-13-13 connect 3See the article Connect to Thrive for more startling information on the importance and power of connecting. Don’t you love it when scientific research supports what God’s Word has shown for so many years already?

As Christians, we are called to fellowship (connect) with one another regularly. Luke said of the early church, “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.” (Acts 2:42)

Just as Christianity grew out of connection among its individual members as they connected to Christ (1 Corinthians 1:9) and fellowshipped with the Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 13:14), so too will the church be strengthened and grow in no other way but through connection and fellowship.

Connection creates a strong base that allows for greater effectiveness that is significant, long-term and sustainable. Want to increase your faith almost instantly? Connect with others. Want to feel more encouraged and motivated? Connect with others.

DISCUSSION: How has the importance of connection evidenced itself in your life?

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8 thoughts on “Sunday Reflections – Connection is Crucial for Victory

  1. Connection is often something that I don't prioritize in the way that I should. It's something I often think I don't need, because I don't really FEEL the drive – or at least I don't feel it as powerfully as I do other things. But the Bible clearly teaches the value of friendship and connection – so who am I to doubt that? That's really what it comes down to: am I going to trust what scripture says or trust what I feel?

    • I struggle with connection for the same reasons, Loren. I don't FEEL like I need it. I can easily be alone, too easily. Scripture does clearly say that connection is valuable, essential & necessary. To not connect is to go against scripture and against God. Ouch! That's a powerful motivator even well beyond the benefits of connection. Great point about the need to trust what God's Word says, regardless of our feelings.

  2. I am thankful that there are different ways to connect. I am thankful that you provide this avenue for a group of people to connect. I look forward to what you, Loren, Tom, Mike, Melanie, Barb, Mary, and others have to say. I think part of the power of connection is knowing that you make an impact on people's lives. It can be highly motivating to know that and encouraging.

    • Me too! Just like we need different people to connect in different ways, we need different ways to connect with different people. Wait, did that come out right? You get my point, I think. Impacting people's lives makes connection so powerful. I think part of connecting is letting others know they make a difference in your life, which is certainly true for all of this blog's followers and their impact on my life.

  3. Hi all, It ia nicw to feel connected when my life is one that does not allow for a lot of interaction with others than my hubby on the road. I appreciate my cell and my laptop that allow me to connect with family and friends, and I know I need that. But the most important connection I must have is the one with ABBA. If I do not take time to connect with Him, then it is easy to have difficulty connecting with others in a positive way.As always thanks Kari for connecting all of us!

  4. Great point. Connection requires good communication too. I was thinking about Peter losing what he thought was his connection and communication with Jesus the night Jesus was arrested. How depressed and insecure the bold Peter felt when left on his own. Fear crept in on Peter…resulting in denials of his relationship. Luke 22:62, and Peter left and wept bitterly! Mark 14:71-72, He even cursed and swore to the crowd that he was not associated with Jesus…the rooster crowing caused Peter to realize his isolation and he wept bitterly. Good news, there is hope – Read the blessing of John 21 "By the Seashore" — Peter had his connection restored and had the communication link he direly needed, and the growth of the early Church responded to his leadership, and he used his value of the connection with Jesus to help Paul get connected with the disciples in Jerusalem when they first rejected Paul. On that point, Paul and Peter, nor all the disciples, agreed on eveyrthing, but their connection allowed for them to communicate their differences that helo build the church as Jesus commanded. Loved the inspiration of your message to remind me of this truth on connection and the commiunication we all need.

    • Peter gives another great example of lost connection that was restored. And that restoration propelled him to move forward with building the early church. The idea that we don't have to agree on everything to be connected when we have Jesus at the heart of our connection is so very important. Great additions to the conversation!

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