Last night at InTents Life Ministries we had a jaw-dropper for a service. First of all, praise and worship was amazing, as usual. Almost as "InTents" as Thursday morning. (hehehe) Thursday at Bible study I was literally stomping my feet. Maybe there's a little pentecostal in there somewhere! It was just overwhelming. Amazing. Talk about the presence of God. WHOA.
Anyway...last night's message: Our main priority as children of God and members of His body is to reconcile. We have to not worry about being right, but about being true to the Word of God. EVEN IF you have been wronged. EVEN IF you ARE right. EVEN IF the person on the other end is continually "being mean" to you for lack of a better term. Our job is to go to that person, and ask for forgiveness for OUR part of the mess, and then come back together as friends.
Waaaait a minute here....I had all that down EXCEPT for the last part. I thought if you forgave, truly in your heart forgave, and did not have any ill will toward a person, that was enough. That you certainly didn't have to get back in relationship with that person! But according to God, it is not enough. We shouldn't forgive and then put up a 2 foot thick plexiglass wall to keep that person at bay. Pastor Dave said, "Can you imagine if the whole church worked on this simultaneously? It would hasten the arrival of the Lord Jesus because He wants to come back to a church without stain or blemish." Now of course, the church will never be perfect, and we KNOW that Jesus IS coming back...but imagine the POWER the church could have if we could stop worrying about who is RIGHT and start coming together as one! Can I get an AMEN??? IF the church, all memebers and denominations, all people of God, would live in true reconcilation with one another...no judging. No competition. No keeping up with the Joneses, materially OR spiritually. The POWER that the church would have then....we WOULD defeat the gates of hell!
I'm not talking praying for "unity;" as Pastor Dave pointed out, many times this is just a way to avoid and not deal with the true problems in the church. Pray for unity, and we'll be unified. Not necessarily so. Pray for reconciliation! Between friends! Bewteen pastor and church member! Between husband and wife! Betweeen demonimational lines! There are MANY things we will not agree on with others....but that doesn't mean they are not saved! There are what Pastor Dave would call "disputable matters" i.e. sprinkling or immersion in baptism. Adult or infant. Ya know, topics like these have seriously caused problems among believers! If someone was more concerned about being RIGHT than being true to God's whole Word....do you see what I'm saying here? If it's not a salvation issue, LET IT GO.
I'm all about hastening the arrival of the Lord Jesus, so I for one, know I have some e-mails to write, some apologies to make, and some reconciliation to do. Church, I BEG you....do the same. You know there is someone you are thinking of right now...maybe they really hurt you. Maybe they did do something wrong...maybe you ARE right about this specific thing....but in 5 years from now is it really going to matter? And how about in eternity??