Today’s Scripture is Romans 15:5-6, 13…
“Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ…Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Today’s blog post is written by Olivia Reynolds, Summer Ministry Intern…
Something I love about the epistles of Paul is that he makes things personal. Usually near the end of each letter, Paul sends his love to fellow Christians, offering them reminders and blessings. It kind of reminds me of a parent sending their child off to school or camp—”Don’t forget your lunch! Remember to be polite! Have lots of fun, we’ll miss you!”
But the stakes for Paul and the early church were much higher than kindergarten or summer camp. New Christians faced persecution from the state and ostracization from their friends and neighbors. So Paul prays that God will give the Christians in Rome the gift of unity—the ability to come together as a whole, to glorify God “with one mind and one mouth.” That might sound unrealistic, and to some extent, it is—life in any community sometimes creates conflict and disagreement. But as these verses remind us, our God is the God of patience, comfort, hope, joy and peace. If we’re striving to cultivate those values in ourselves, we’re working toward the kingdom of Heaven. And it’s important that we do that together!
So let’s take a minute to reflect on our relationships. If you’re finding that there’s resentment or stubbornness in your heart against a fellow believer, use this opportunity to make things right. It’s a tough way to stretch, I know, but resolving those conflicts can be such a relief!
After all, remember that we serve the same amazing God and share the same transformative hope. That’s more important than anything that divides us.