Wednesday, February 16, 2011

To flee or not to flee - Living in community

Getting along is hard, or is it just me? I find myself in a constant struggle with my inner feelings towards some, who I have been called to walk with. I think I am the only one who struggles with this issue. I see others who are so skilled at letting go and moving on. I also see others who say that they let go, but don't and carry anger, and resentment towards me or someone else that clouds their relationship with God. This is an issue that I struggle with daily. I want to be genuine. I want to be honest ALWAYS! It's hard though, because for whatever reason there is a lot of silence in community. People are afraid (myself included) to speak to someone about an issue, even when scripture says we should.

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:15-17

I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in mind and thought 1 Corinthians 1:10

This is only a couple of examples of how we are to live with each other. I'm also reminded of the verses in Acts:

Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,
praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. Acts 2:46-47

Unbelievers saw the love these people had for each other and wanted that. Sadly today there is not always much love shown in community. There is anger, resentment, frustration, manipulation, but mostly SILENCE.

This post was prompted by a quote in an article I'm reading that states:
"Running away from conflict is never the answer. "growth is dependent on staying and DEALING with stuff, not fleeing. There's a lot of infidelity in society that's rooted in our lack of commitment to particular people in particular places. And stability is a call to learn how to STAY in ways that are healthy."

As I read this quote I thought about what people flee from: Relationships, Marriage, Churches, Jobs, etc....
And also staying does not mean putting up with, but (did you see it) DEALING with stuff. Don't put on a happy face like everything is honkey dorey when things aren't. That is not truth and that is not dealing with stuff. Working through issues takes guts and the prompting of the Holy Spirit. But God wants us to live together in harmony, that means that it can happen if we focus on him and come together in humility.

Finally Ephesians 4:25-27, 29-32 says:
Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body. “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold....Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

With man this is not possible, but with God ALL things are possible, so I continue to lay my struggle at his feet, hoping not to pick it up again.

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