Unity in the Body of Christ
Unity in the Body of Christ
1 As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called— 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
I have truly been amazed this past week especially. As I have pondered this passage of Scripture as part of our prayer for the month for the upcoming Faith and Family Weekend www.faithandfamilyweekend.org in October, I have been seeing and hearing first hand what unity of the Spirit and Oneness in Christ is all about.
In the last two weeks God raised up people to help with a benefit yard sale for our Prayer Walk - SHEPHERD'S WALK at Sweetbriar.
Donations of items rolled in and I had enough help for each day [and we did two back to back weekends]. During the sale we would tell people about Shepherd's Walk and invited some of them to walk the prayer walk right then. They were amazed by it and often asked, "What church do you belong to?" I am sorry to say that I did not have the right answer each time I was asked that question because it was not my own church that sponsored this - it was the body of Christ - people from many area churches participated. I was also in awe of the people who just handed us money as a pure donation - especially after they walked the path.
The money was used to purchase the nice metal benches for each prayer station as well as 3 large ones for the Sanctuary Circle. We raised enough to cover all of that as well as other needs.
Why do I mention all of this now? Because God does not look down from heaven and say, "Oh, there is Stephanie, she is from ______ church." Or, "Yes, that's Claire, she belongs to ______ church." Or Donna, or Mike, or Kathy, or Bonnie and Tom, or Joan, or Dee, or Lina, or Bill and Annette, or any of us. He simply says, "Yes those are My children, who follow Me."
It reminds me of the one session in Beth Moore's Believing God Bible Study where she tells about an imaginary town called: "Lessthanland". As she groups different congregations representing churches among those present - she soon shows how God sees us as His children - 'those who have a heart for Him'... she then pulls away the ropes that section off all of those denominations and they join hands to represent the Body of Christ as God sees us. It is an amazing video - one that has a great impact on those who view it.
As we have been gathering for prayer now for months for Faith and Family Weekend, it was one person, my friend, Lori Carlin, whom God gave the vision to for this event. She chased a lion on this one and is following the Lord through this unknown journey and trusting God for what HE has planned for that weekend. It will be held in famous Ocean City, NJ, in October, and is an outreach for the FAMILY. America's favorite family resort is bringing back FAITH and FAMILY. This is close to my heart because when I was a young girl of 14, I received Christ as my Savior and Lord in Ocean City one night at a church youth group event.
God gave the vision to Lori, but many have stepped up to support and help her - and to trust God with her that He is faithful to fulfill what He began.
I know I've been all over the map with this post - but hear me out. If you know Jesus Christ as your personal Savior [saved from sin and death] and Lord [He is master of your life] then you are a child of God and part of the universal body of Christ in which this passage [above] applies.
Ask yourself, "What can I do to encourage, to be patient, to bring hope, to build up, to keep peace with my fellow sisters and brothers in Christ?"
I'm so thankful that I love and serve the ONE TRUE and LIVING GOD, JESUS CHRIST, the same yesterday, today and forever.... the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
AND... that Jesus Loves ME! When it's all said and done - it's our relationship to Him that counts for all eternity.
[JESUS - the One I Worship]