“Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:3
“Leave me alone! Leave me in peace!” we say, sometimes with little respect, when we are fed up and tired of putting up with a difficult person or situation. We somehow think that these two things … peace and being alone … necessarily go together. When we are worn out, we assume we need some time for ourselves to regain our emotional strength. Jesus retreated to a mountain. We might go for a walk or retreat to our room to be alone.
Yet, peace is not just a private matter. On the contrary, we find real inner peace only when we are at peace with others (and ultimately with God). Joy and peace come from enjoying healthy relationships with friends we can trust. Christians can experience unity as we seek peace in our relationships with one another. We are one in Christ only through the Spirit of peace who dwells in us.
Whenever we seek peace that excludes God, we will receive human compromises that cannot last. Whenever we seek unity outside of the Holy Spirit, we will gain structures and organizations that only mimic the real church of God. They have no real spiritual power.
Unity doesn’t happen by chance. We must seek it, built it, and encourage it. We live in a world where division is the norm – within families, at work, in schools, in churches, in sports, in politics, and in ethics. True Christian unity is a revolutionary force that opposes and puts this world to shame. It shows the intimate nature of our triune God. It fulfills the desire of Christ for His church, creating the healthy environment in which the children of God can grow and build His kingdom through God’s gifts and blessings.
Are we aware of its power? Are we intentional peace and unity makers?
Progetto Archippo is an Italian ministry whose vision is to help the kingdom of God grow by helping believers grow within their local churches. It organizes seminars on different topics, all linked to church life, missions, and evangelization. It is also involved in promoting the unity of the whole Church through networking and publications. www.progettoarchippo.org (in Italian)
Progetto Archippo is organizing for next April (2019) a two day conference on church unity where pastors and missionaries from all over Italy will be invited to share their experiences of collaboration with other local churches and ministries. They will discuss what biblical unity looks like, ways to promote it, and what works and doesn’t work in real life situations.
We ask you to consider sponsoring one pastor’s attendance (Cost: $75). Most Italian pastors are bi-vocational and have to pay for their own travel expenses. Lowering the cost of their attendance might make the difference, enabling them to participate. Thank you for partnering with us in spreading peace and unity!
To learn more, link HERE