Thankful Thirty – We Have Everything Needed to Unite
We’d been at the church for only a few months when past differences and current beliefs caused more than half the congregation to leave. It’s ugly and painful.
I searched Google asking, “How many protestant denominations are there in the world?”
The answers are staggering . . . anywhere from just under 1,000 to upwards of 30,000.
I tend to think it’s closer to the lower number, but does it really matter.
Jesus wanted His followers to be strengthened through unity. It was His prayer:
I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me. I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one. I am in them and You are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that You sent me and that You love them as much as You love me. John 17:20–23
But we bicker and argue. We want to win more than we want to understand. And when we don’t win we take our toys and go home.
“We as Christians are called to battle. The problem is, we don’t fight about the right things and we do fight about the wrong things. We aren’t getting in the battle that we should and so we fight over petty, insignificant things. Why? Because we are bored. We are soldiers created for fighting against the enemy, Satan, but instead we fight against each other.” ~Lisa Bedric
When our goal becomes glorifying God every day through love, we will focus less on the things that divide us and more on the One who unites us.
God would not ask us for unity if He hadn’t already given us everything we need. Let’s start thanking Him for the gift of unity and see the changes He can make in our hearts.
Quotes and Verses on Unity
“Has it ever occurred to you that one hundred pianos all tuned to the same fork are automatically tuned to each other? They are of one accord by being tuned, not to each other, but to another standard to which each one must individually bow. So one hundred worshipers met together, each one looking away to Christ, are in heart nearer to each other than they could possibly be, were they to become ‘unity’ conscious and turn their eyes away from God to strive for closer fellowship.” ~A.W. Tozer
May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 15:5–6
“One of the main tasks of theology is to find words that do not divide but unite, that do not create conflict but unity, that do not hurt but heal.” ~Henri Nouwen
I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose. 1 Corinthians 1:10
“What binds us together is not common education, common race, common income levels, common politics, common nationality, common accents, common jobs, or anything else of that sort. Christians come together because they have all been loved by Jesus himself. They are a band of natural enemies who love one another for Jesus’ sake.” ~D.A.Carson
Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. Ephesians 4:2–3
“Forgive and give as if it were your last opportunity. Love like there’s no tomorrow, and if tomorrow comes, love again.” ~Max Lucado
Father, Forgive us for the times we’ve failed to make unity a priority. For those times we’ve spoken unkind words to win and haven’t listened to understand. You have given us all we need to be united in Christ Jesus. You cover us with Jesus. You give us Your Spirit. You make unifying fruit available to us. Help us to place love over being right. Unite us Father in Jesus name. Amen.
How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony! Psalm 133:1
Placing love over needing to be right . . . that’s exactly what Jesus would have us do. May our focus be on Him so we can truly be united to others in the faith.
Beautifully written, I wish we could send this out as a letter to Christian leaders. Our fight should be about the right things.
I wish we could see a fight about who is going to evangelise to the hither worlds, who is more eager about soul winning?// like Lord send me!
Just thinking aloud.
Many Blessings to you Deb.