The Great Divide has the power to either keep us down during our darkest and loneliest moments or bring us together as we recognize what makes life special.
How can division bring us together?
Well, it first creates an opportunity for us to learn about what we have in common and what makes us different. And then we’re given the opportunity to choose to grow alongside each other. But sometimes, we see people as being too different from us—culturally, physically, spiritually, ideologically, and we miss the chance to love what makes each of us unique.
Think about when you were a child. There were times in school when a new kid showed up, and you had a decision to make: Should I make his life easier by asking him to sit with us at lunch, or should I ignore him? There’s always a choice to make. Do you invite the only ethnically different kid in class to your house to play? Do you whisper about the few white people at your all-black church?
Imagine how Jesus would handle any of those situations. He went out of his way to sit down and have conversations with those considered different. Think about the pain he must feel when we don’t do the same.
1 Corinthians 1:10
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.
Something gets lost in the translation of this scripture. The word “division” in ancient Greek is “schismata,” which means to tear. The disciple Paul, who wrote this verse, is begging for us to stop ripping apart the body of Christ. We need to love one another by bridging the gap, and we do that by staying connected. Everyone is guilty of failing to love the way God intended. As Jonathan McReynolds says in his song “People,” I ask God to “forgive me when I’m one of those people.”
How do you initially respond to someone who doesn’t see things your way? Do you attempt to learn about those who are culturally different from you?
Make an effort to live life with others outside of school, church, and the workplace. Invite people to church to show them what your faith is about. Attend GrowthTrack to further understand and learn how to use your spiritual gifts.
Lord God, forgive me for my selfishness when I fail to understand the differences I have with others. Thank you for blessing me with opportunities to share my faith in different ways. Help others realize that our misunderstandings don’t determine who we are as a whole. Allow us to continue to grow together so that we may love as you have intended. Amen.
This post was written by Jaron Camp, a regular contributor to the LivingItOut Bible Study.
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