Let yourself become open to God and the knowledge that comes from the Word. Ask God for a peace at this time.
1 Corinthians 1:3-17 (NRSV)
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that has been given you in Christ Jesus, for in every way you have been enriched in him, in speech and knowledge of every kind— just as the testimony of Christ has been strengthened among you— so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ. He will also strengthen you to the end, so that you may be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful; by him you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Now I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you be in agreement and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same purpose. For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there are quarrels among you, my brothers and sisters. What I mean is that each of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” Has Christ been divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, so that no one can say that you were baptized in my name. (I did baptize also the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else.) For Christ did not send me to baptize but to proclaim the gospel, and not with eloquent wisdom, so that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its power.
From the text it is clear that divisions have been a problem as long as people have been involved in the church. Seems like there is no way around having disagreements. Many times we can agree to disagree. However, there are times when situations become so heated that we find ourselves involved in divisions that are painful and many times unnecessary.
Why is being right so important to us? Is our perspective worth breaking ties and relationships with others? Of course there will be times when it is necessary to break ties and relationships. I would not want any of my brothers or sisters to remain in abusive relationships. But as far as church matters that do not involve abuse of power or some other dreadful behavior, we need to learn to live together and grow toward one another. Conflicts happen, but reconciliation can happen too! Jesus came so that we would have life and have it to the fullest—including growing and building the kingdom together! There is room for all of us at Christ’s table. Love invites everyone to the table and enables us to learn to live with everyone who comes. There is only one table, One God, One Lord of all!
Precious God, forgive us when we get caught up in arguments for the sake of being right and not looking at what being right means or costs. Help us to love and live together as one body. Empower us to be the people you would have us to be, seeking reconciliation wherever there is division. Amen.
Go with God.