Monday, July 02, 2018

Where There Is Unity, There Is God's Blessing

Holland, Michigan

How good and pleasant it is
    when God’s people live together in unity!
It is like precious oil poured on the head,
    running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron’s beard,
    down on the collar of his robe.
It is as if the dew of Hermon
    were falling on Mount Zion.
For there the Lord bestows his blessing,
    even life forevermore.

Psalm 133:1-3

When I was in a fraternity, as an undergraduate at Northern Illinois University, there were campus "fraternity games" every spring. The different fraternities challenged each other in athletic events. One of them was the tug-of-war.

Ten men lined up on two sides of a creek. They gripped a thick rope. They dug their heels in, leaned back, and tried to pull the other fraternity team into the creek. I loved watching this! These were big, strong guys, some of whom were on NIU's football team. One fraternity brother stood next to them and coached them, shouting to pull together, in unity. The winning team was the strongest, most-united team. Sheer strength was not enough to win this contest. There had to be a united pulling-together.

It is the same with Real Church. Sheer giftedness is not enough. There must be humble submission to one another, a united pulling-together. The Church wins when we pull together in the same direction, since God's blessing pour out on unity.

We see this in Philippians 2:1-2, one of the most beautiful unity-passages ever written. It says:

Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose.

Belonging to Christ.


Fellows in a ship together.



Wholehearted agreement.

One another.

Working together.

One mind and purpose.

We pull together, for the same cause, the cause of Christ. We experience God's favor and blessing.

See also 

In Essentials Unity, in Nonessentials Liberty, and in All Things, Love.

My two books are:

Praying: Reflections on 40 Years of Solitary Conversations with God (May 2016)

Leading the Presence-Driven Church (January 2018)

I am now writing:

How God Changes the Human Heart

Technology and Spiritual Formation