Unity in the Body

June 12, 2017

Colossians 3:12-14

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

Unity in the Body

I was just thinking about if my right thumb got offended with my index finger and decided to leave my right hand go over to my left.  Now I’ve got two left thumbs.  Then my left big toe has a falling out with my left foot and decides to go join up with my nose.  Now I’ve got my former big left toe trying to function as a nose.  Do we get the picture of how dissension and disunity in the body can quickly bring dysfunction and misalignment?  It doesn’t take long before we no longer have a functioning body, but a freakish mess.  Does that resemble how we see a lot of the body of Christ trying to operate in today? 

Why, because we are all so easily offended and willing to move out of the place where God has set us.  It is important that you truly seek God to place you in a body and that when He does you are not moved except by Him.  Most of us know that when you start rubbing a lot of different personalities together you may well create a blister or a sore spot.  Our first tendency is get up and just move to a different seat or a different church.  Just because our brothers and sisters are Christians doesn’t mean everything in our relationship with them is going to be rosy.  What we may overlook is there is always an enemy at work to kill, steal and destroy and while he may well be at work to cause disunity and division, there is also God that is at work to mature us in our love and tolerance of one another. 

I see people come and go out of our particular body of Christ all of the time.  Most of them are precious men and women of God.  I observe that so many times it is personal dislike, disagreements or offenses with others that make them move on.  Maybe it was in God’s time to move them on, but a lot of times I think it is because we won’t allow ourselves to be perfected in love.  Our love is still mostly about our personal preferences, opinions and how we think things should be.  Because we took up a grievance and moved out of position of where God placed us, how do you think that ends up impacting your ministry for yourself and for others.  Now you move someplace else until you are offended or in disagreement again and so the cycle goes.  Thus so many play the game of musical churches.

What we are missing is some of the spiritual clothing that we are suppose to have put on.  Instead of our suit and tie or our going to Sunday dress let’s put the clothing that the Word exhorts us to be clothed with.  Compassion, having more of a heart for others than we do for ourselves.  Kindness, which extends itself to looking after the interest of others and not just self.  Humility, which is strength under control, so that despite who and what you may be in the Spirit, you are always coming under and lifting others up.  Gentleness, it is not harsh, or brash, but handles others with the love of Jesus.  Patience, last but not least, it is the patience of God that helps us to endure the offenses, misdeeds and issues of others.  Remember that, unless you’ve started walking on water, you have some issues of your own that others have to tolerate in you.  The bottom line is we have to grasp and lay hold of what true agape’ love is, if we are going to start seeing unity at work in the body.  As long the body is always upset and fighting among itself it can never come into the focus of its purpose.  The first revelation we all have to get is that body ministry and functionality is not first about us; it is about Him!  We come together to first worship and serve Him, not just to get our ego stroked and our preferences met. 

We have entered into an hour and season where love and unity in the body is paramount to what God is doing at this time.  He is calling us to be a healthy, living breathing organism ruled and compelled by love, not a misfit organization trying to play church.  We’ve come to treat our relationship with the body of Christ like we do many of our marriages, when it gets to messy we bail out of it. As long we keep running away and moving on, we can’t come into the fullness of unity, love and purpose God has for us. 

I am not going to tell you that everything leadership or somebody else in the body did to you was right or justified.  It probably wasn’t, but what does the Word say?  “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”  Have we all truly done that?  It would be great if we were all perfect in our love and didn’t have to deal with these issues, but the truth is that it takes dealing with these issues if we are going to mature in the love of Christ.  You don’t think there were days Jesus might have felt like kicking his disciples to the curb and saying, “I don’t have to put up with this.” It was because He clothed himself with these very attributes that He not only put with them, but endured the cross for them, as well as us.  If it is our desire to be identified with His nature and character, then we are going to have to endure some of the work of the cross in us.   Be where God places you and stay there until He moves you.  If you are going through some things it is because you need to grow through some of these things.  Remember it is the lowest valleys that prepare you for the highest mountains. 

The body must truly put on the love and humility of Christ if we are to walk in unity to accomplish the purpose of the Father.  He said we would be a bride without spot or wrinkle.  Well, obviously there is a whole lot of cleaning and ironing that needs to go on to get us there.  Allow His love to have its perfect work in you.

 

Blessings,

#kent

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