"Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood."
Thoughts for Today:We need to be very careful whenever we say the words: "At my church..." That phrase is typically used as if by position or mere attendance it has become a personal possession. I think the thought process of vested personal ownership (based upon how much money has been given, what position is held, or how many generations have been members) is the source of many major and minor conflicts throughout church history. People sometimes forget that the church is us, not buildings or institutions; and the only one who owns it is Jesus -- who paid for all of us -- with His own life long ago.
Our job to shepherd the church of God becomes a whole lot simpler when we remember who we work for and who is in charge. It keeps minor differences in style and preferences as just what they are -- superficial in the context of the greater purpose.
We might pose the question: If it is the church of God, then why do we let small issues turn into major battles which end up ripping the church apart? I believe it is because we have lost connection to the head, Jesus Christ. We have forgotten that we are His church and we belong to Him.
Questions to Ponder:At the church I attend, every leadership meeting starts in prayer; is interrupted regularly with prayer; and always concludes in prayer. I've been to finance meetings in which we have had significant differences of opinion. Invariably we stop and give the discussion over to the Lord, asking for His intercession and leadership. If you are having conflict in your small group, ministry, or household, ask the question: Who is in charge, man or the Lord? Will you give leadership and decision making over to the Lord?