In essentials, unity; in non-essentials liberty, in all things charity.
Unity is a gift from God. Have you ever thought about the fact that unity is not something that we can achieve? Unity is something that must be received from God. You ask where in the world are you getting that from? This passage found in John 17 is a prayer. Jesus is asking the Father in a prayer to make His children, the church unified. This is not something that we can work hard at inside the church and have unity. Unity is a supernatural gift from the Holy Spirit.
Unity matters to God. It amazes me to think right now that Jesus is praying for you and for me. What is He praying? That we would as a people, a church who would be unified. Unity doesn’t mean that we are going to agree on everything, but we know how to disagree in a right manner. I think the world has yet to see what a unified people who claim the name of Jesus Christ could do. My prayer is that FBA would be that place.
I have two sons; one is twenty-one and one is seventeen. When they were younger it was fun to watch them interact. They would sometimes throw down (fight) and I would have to intervene. On one occasion there were about ten boys playing basketball in the driveway and I heard it getting heated from the kitchen. A few minutes later my oldest son came inside and went upstairs, not saying a word. Following him my youngest came inside to get a drink of water. I asked him what all the commotion was about, and he said that he and another boy, we will call “Bill,” got into it. The problem is “Bill” was fourteen years old and my youngest son was eleven. He was so excited to tell me that his older brother stepped up and protected him and assured me nothing happened, and all was good. Here is the deal, brothers can fight with each other but when someone else messes with your brother it’s on. You don’t mess with your brother or your sister because there is a family bond that is there. If you have a relationship with Jesus Christ, then we are related. We have the same Father which makes us brothers and sisters. We have the same Savior. We have the same Holy Spirit that dwells inside us. There is a bond that we have together. Unity inside the church will compel a lost world outside the church to believe.
Would it be your prayer today that you would steward well this concept of unity. How can we do that? A) Forgive – be willing to forgive others as Christ has forgiven us. B) Put others needs ahead of our own. C) Speak words of encouragement. Encouragement is oxygen for the soul.