The word for this week is UNITY.
It's a word that describes the best way to progress in ministry. In fact, it is the only prescribed way from God for the church to be effective in its mission. Unity is a word that produces results that the adversary hates. Results that he will tirelessly attempt to overthrow or undermine.
If you were with us on Sunday, you were given the important distinction between uniformity and unity. Uniformity may be best illustrated by a marching band--all dress identical; they practice long and hard on being in line and remaining in step. While some may play different instruments that produce distinct tones, their individuality is lost in the crowd and their contribution is often lost to those who are observing.
Unity is different. It's often out of line, maybe even out of place, BUT thank God those in the church are never out of touch or out of reach from God who placed them in the body by grace to begin with. Unity celebrates the differences and embraces the opportunity to come together, which at times can be challenging to say the least. However we, who have been changed in Christ must realize that no one member of the body has all the answers nor is one member able to see the entire picture. Only the Head of the body has that capability and each of the members must take their direction from Him through the discernment of the Holy Spirit. That is only possible as we consider one another with the love of Christ and we demonstrate that love daily. We do not settle for declaring it from a distance nor from the shadows of a deceptive heart.
The miracle of God within any congregation of believers, uniquely created in God's image is their willingness to be diverse in their opinion and then come together in the cause they're presented with. It is the 'Oil' of the Holy Spirit, present and active in each believer that keeps the gears of ministry from intense friction that can result in the inner workings seizing and grinding to a halt.
Scripture affirms the unity of the body at work under the influence of the Holy Spirit.
"Behold, how good and pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity." Psalm 133:1
God is for unity and God is for us who are known by Him!
Romans 8 overflows with spiritual treasure. Listen to Romans 8:31-32--"What then shall we say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?"
So to what end did God demonstrate that He is truly for us? Well I'm glad you asked. Listen to verse 32--"He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not freely give us all things?"
Unity always strengthens and division always weakens. Always! Therefore I encourage you to be a 'uniter' and not a 'divider' in your conversation and conduct. Jesus said, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God." Matthew 5:9
Both peacemakers and peacekeepers preserve the unity of the fellowship. And yet Jesus emphasized peacemaking, which is always more challenging. Ultimately unity is worth the effort.
In unity, we will see, more importantly share the continuing work of ministry in the body of Christ to the community of Hinton and beyond.
May the grace of God overflow in you this week!
1 Corinthians 15:58