It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord. Paul – 1 Corinthians 1:30-31
One of the ugliest things to watch is the disruption of a marriage or the dissolution of a long lasting friendship. These two examples are also some of the most painful things to endure, regardless of the reason for fissure. The breaking of a union, no matter the type, frequently comes with scars and damage.
As I was working as a faculty member for a church camp, a pastor used the following example. Taking two pieces of paper, he glued them together and allowed the bond to take hold. Once the bond was set, the attempt to separate those two pages with minimal damage to either sheet. The result, regardless of his care, was still a torn sheet.
Now, if you look at most relationships and even marriages, there were probably moments that were stellar and drove those in the relationship towards one another. The excitement of adventure, the comforts of familiarity, and the bond of shared interests can build up a good union. No one earnestly starts a relationship with the hopes to dissolve the connection at some later date and so it starts off well.
The issue often comes when our interests become divided through ill chosen battles. Now, I’m not dismissing turns of events that are abominable, but rather looking at events where overtime there was an ever so small development of separation. This could be emotional detachment, or over committance to things outside of the friendship. There are many situations that can lead to the end of friendship.
What does all this have to do with today’s verses?
Our ability to maintain unity comes from a higher perspective than we get by looking at our own nose. In our relationships, the most important perspective to keep is the perspective which maintains view of everyone’s perspectives, desires, and needs. It seeks out the good of the whole rather than the good of a particular side.
Now, take that perspective and think about this: how does this impact your relationship with God? How would this impact your relationship with a significant other? How does this impact your relationship with a friend? a stranger? Democrats? Republicans? *Theists? Your neighbor?
To be a Christian is to realize that your life was paid for by a higher order and by the whims of the higher order. Christ died for us, not because we had something to give, but because he had chosen to give. Spoken a bit differently, John writes later in the New Testament, “We love because Christ first loved us.” He lead by example and now we follow in that path.
In view of that, our job is to love other people regardless of their station, social status, beliefs, or political agenda. Our job is to make sure that we take every step to seek out the true good in our interactions with all people. After all, is that not what Jesus did for us?
So my challenge today is this: In this season of political turmoil, seek bi-partisanship. In your season of loneliness, seek a healthy relationship. In your spiritual walk, seek a broader perspective with the father of all who through you can do all things. Seek the perspective of highest love in all things and you can surely do no harm.