This past Sunday, we dealt with handling conflicts and storms in life as we studied 1 Peter 5:1-11. I stressed the call of Peter turn your eyes to God. I did this because I wanted to make sure the hearer understood the repetitive call of Peter to focus on God during times of difficulty. However, I want to make sure that I do not minimize the gift God has given in surrounding Christians with other Christians. If you recall, in the passage Peter says to consider others that are suffering similarly. What a great help these "others" can be to us.
I believe God has called Christians to be a part of a community of believers that are committed not only to Him, but to one another as well. Dr. Mark Dever is a pastor in Washington, DC. Over the years he has greatly shaped my thinking about the importance of the local church. I encourage you to follow this link and read an article he has written about the wonderful gift that is the called the local church.