There is so much to divide us right now. And Satan loves it.
The Bible says that Satan is prowling around like a roaring lion looking who he can devour (1 Peter 5:8). That's why we're called to be watchful. Because Satan is on the loose, looking to consume. He's looking to cause fear, panic, and confusion. He's looking to bring destruction and death any way he can.
And I'm convinced that one of the things he loves most is when he's able to bring division to the body of Christ. Whatever he can do to distract us from the mission Christ has given us, he will do. And he will do it with a smile on his face.
He loves division. He loves it when we're divided and we fight over things that don't matter for eternity. He loves it when we're so divided and bickering with one another that we neglect our primary responsibility as agents of reconciliation in this world. He loves it when churches turn against other churches rather than be lighthouses of Christ's love and grace in their communities. He loves it when pastors turn against other pastors rather than seek the "good and pleasant" of dwelling together in unity (Psalm 133:1).
And it breaks my heart to see so much of this going on right now. It's difficult to to see our world so divided in these days, but what's heartbreaking is to see many churches, brothers and sisters in Christ, so divided right now.
So I want to invite you to pray with me for unity. That the things that can so easily entangle and divide a church family would be cast off. That churches everywhere, including ours, would be united for the sake of the gospel moving forward with love, grace and power.
May we be found praying along with Jesus, who cried out to His Father in John 17 for His people to be united. “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me." (v. 20-23)
Just as He and the Father are one, He prays for us. For the unity of His people, that we would know that kind of fellowship and closeness and joy that comes with dwelling together in unity.
So rather than allow things that really don't matter for eternity divide and distract us, my plea for churches everywhere is to move forward united around Jesus!
Jesus makes us family.
Jesus is who we all share in common.
Jesus loved us, called us, redeemed us, adopted us, justified us, and is at work sanctifying us until the Day of His return.
So let's unite around Jesus for the sake of the world knowing what God's deep love towards them looks like.
Yes we can have different opinions.
Yes we can vote for different political parties.
Yes we can differ in our views on social issues and eschatology and government policies.
Diversity is healthy and it makes us stronger.
But let's unite around Jesus.
Let's unite around Jesus for the sake of the world hearing the church in unity echo forth the greatest news this world could ever hear: "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16).
So in these days with so much to divide us, let's pray for unity. Let's pray for strength and grace to lock arms together as we live for Him, share this Good News, and show the world His incredible, relentless, life-giving, joy-filling, unifying love.