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Laurel Heights SDA Church Blog

 

Toward a Closer Walk

This Presidential Battle is still at the forefront of our lives. Everyone is predicting the outcome, but the election has simply not been called because ballots are still being counted. We as a nation seem to be hopelessly divided. As much as we all want peace and togetherness, the Bible prophetically describes the time of the end as a vicious cycle of unending disasters and scary division between and within nations. God, on the other hand, is calling for togetherness and unity among His people. In fact in the Gospel of John 17:21-23 Jesus prays “…that all of them may be one, Father, just as You are in Me — and I am in You…that they may be one as We are one — I in them and You in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity.” The disciples are described in Acts 1:14 and in Acts 2:1 as being in One Accord.” Being in one accord, however, doesn’t just happen.

 

Paul, writing to the church in Ephesians provides counsel with the intent that if followed, the church in Ephesus could be united and therefore be a living example of togetherness in that city. In his letter to the church in Ephesus, Paul, in very compelling words urges the Ephesian church to “…live a life worthy of the calling you have received.” He then goes on to encourage the people to “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:1-3 (NIV)

 

Being in “One Accord” means that we surrender ourselves to the will of God. The path to oneness happens when we accept Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for our salvation and go on to allow God to grow the “fruit of the Spirit” - love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control (Galatians 5:22-23) in our lives. We are not talking here about the non-negotiable truths so clearly laid out in scripture. We are talking about how we view each other and how we treat each other. Yes, a common understanding of Bible truth gives us a body of commonality that is central to our lives and provides common ground upon which we rejoice but (an example of this would be that of the incarnation, the Sabbath, Jesus dying on the cross for our sins, the 2nd coming of Jesus, …) the development of the “fruit of the Spirit” in our lives provides us with agreeableness of personality and living that brings us to a love for one another. This “Love” for one another carries us forward into the joy of togetherness where we have made things “right” will each other. Issues like anger, contempt, judging of one another, are put aside and forgiveness and love for one another prevails.

 

Can you imagine what a blessing it would be to be in “One Accord” in our families, our neighborhoods, our communities (SA), our nation, our places of work, and yes, even in our church? The feeling of togetherness in purpose would overcome the proverbial pushing and shoving that happens when we each are trying to get our way. Our attitudes and responses to everything from presidential elections to wearing a mask would change. We would be able to pray in oneness for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit; dialogue about the real issues of life and come to consensus; focus on principles that will move us forward and not upon our irritating differences; and encourage one another instead of blaming each other for our failings.

 

Lord God, please allow circumstances in our lives that will lead us to being in “One Accord.” We desire the outpouring of the Holy Spirit which can only happen as we follow the example of the disciples in Act 2. To this we surrender. In Jesus Name, Amen.

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