What an amazing morning of worship. Picture different pastors, each from different churches, meeting together once a week for months developing a relationship, friendship, and worshiping together to ultimately take back what they have gained together to each of their respective churches. How awesome is that? I love it. I love the unity. I love the mission. I love how they are practicing to be “one church here on earth as we will all come together to be ONE in heaven”. Putting aside theology, worship preferences, traditions, etc. and uniting together. I love that we are privileged to be a part of something so beautiful. For the next four weeks, these four pastors are teaching the same sermon each week to their congregations, and then will come together for a combined worship service on a Sunday evening at the end of the series. I am so looking forward to this. The theme is ONE.
The scripture text is taken from Ephesians 4: 1-6. There were just a few nuggets that spoke to me and that I don’t want to forget.
1.) In the church of Jesus Christ there is no competition. Everyone is on the same team!
2.) Despite our differences there is only one church.
3.) We must not take our eyes off of Oneness in Christ. When we do, Satan has us right where he wants us.
Those are some tough concepts, aren’t they? Of all places, as sad as it is, there is conflict at times in church. We are human. We all sin and have fallen short. God never intended for church to be fractured, divided or stalled out. Ever. We are called to “CELEBRATE our ‘oneness’ in Christ”. How often do we focus on things that absolutely have no eternal value? How often do we stand firm on things that really don’t matter? What would Jesus do? What would Jesus think? How would Jesus feel? These are very real questions that have kind of been used as popular sayings in the last few years, but wow, do they ever help you gain perspective.
To declare our Oneness in Christ today, at the end of the service we all lit a candle and stuck it in the sandbox shaped as a cross. So powerful! The pictures just don’t do it justice. All the time singing “the ground is level at the foot of the cross.” Yes, it sure is. We were created each to do our specific part in furthering the Kingdom of God. And we are called to be ONE when doing so. “..if we are going to be ONE church in heaven some day–should we not be practicing this today?” THE GROUND IS LEVEL AT THE FOOT OF THE CROSS!