Considering all of the tragedies in the world... war and civil unrest in the Arab nations... threats of war and terror against Israel... and the devastating earthquakes in Haiti, Japan and elsewhere... now should be the time that Christians fulfill the work that Jesus commissioned:
- Healing those who are hurting.
- Feeding those who are hungry.
- Clothing those who are naked.
- Loving those who are broken.
Unfortunately, it seems a difficult task to accomplish when there are so many fights and schisms between those whose lead characteristic is supposed to be that of love.
Tired of participating in battles within the body of Christ? Ready to begin your course of treatment? This week’s blog features articles on broken relationships within the Body of Christ.
Following is medicine from Pastor Jake, Judy Ann and Brotha DC that should help us begin to bridge the chasms that separates us. Use these to help clean your headlights so you can shine for Jesus.
SchismsWhat are Schisms? The dictionary definition:
by Brotha DC
schism[siz-uhm, skiz-] Show IPA
division or disunion, especially into mutually opposed parties.
the parties so formed.
a formal division within, or separation from, a church or religious body over some doctrinal difference.
the state of a sect or body formed by such division.
the offense of causing or seeking to cause such a division.
Scripturally, schisms are something that God hates. In Proverbs 6, we see the six things that God hates (indeed, seven are an abomination to Him). The seventh is sowing discord among your brothers. In other words, creating or fomenting or perpetuating schisms.
Schisms are something that Jesus prayed that the disciples would not have -- expressing His desire that those who believe in Him (that includes modern day believers, not just the 12 apostles in the Bible) would be in unity, not separated by schisms.
Schisms are something that St. Paul gave great effort towards avoiding. He exercised and disciplined himself (spiritually speaking) so that he would not offend God or man. As someone who opens his mouth and changes feet... I can see the need to avoid offending others in my life. How about you?
Schisms are something that should not -- must not exist in the body of Christ. The human body can not function without clear connectivity between each organ, limb, and system. The same would apply to our corporate spiritual connectivity.
Schisms are a disease that prevents God’s people from doing what God wants us to do. For more on this topic, check out the following Powerhouse Sermons:
Nail in the Fence
by Pastor Jake
There once was a little boy who had a bad Temper. His Father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his Temper, he must hammer a nail into the back of the fence.
The first day the boy had driven 37 nails into the fence.
Over the next few weeks, as he learned to control his anger, the number of nails hammered daily gradually dwindled down. He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence.
Finally the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that He was able to hold his temper. The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone. The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence.
He said, “You have done well, my son, but look at the Holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, those words leave a scar just like this one. You can put a knife in a man and draw it out. It won’t matter how many times you say ‘I’m Sorry,’ the wound is still there.” A verbal wound is as bad as a physical one.
Friends are very rare jewels, indeed. They make you smile and encourage you to succeed. They lend an ear, they share words of praise. And they always want to open their hearts to us.”
Show your Friends how much you care. Send this to everyone you consider a FRIEND, even if it means sending it back to the person who sent it to you. If it comes back to you, then you’ll know you have a circle of friends. YOU ARE MY FRIEND AND I AM HONORED! Now send this to every friend you have!! Send it to your family. And, finally…
Please forgive me if I have ever left a hole.
Word In Due Season… The Effect Of Your Words
by Judy Ann
Ecclesiastes 10:20 is a powerful scripture that warns us of the danger of gossip, tale bearing and backbiting. Speaking such things in private to even one person is just as damaging as speaking it to a multitude. Not only have we slandered an individual to another, but WORDS have been spoken out into the atmosphere that have continuing effect in the spiritual realm.
Gossip is a big problem among God’s children, and it should even be named as an attribute of the life of a Christian. Tale bearing, gossip, slander, and backbiting cause strife and division, which is the devil’s goal. Jesus’ words are spirit and life. Learning to say only what He would say, we would speak forth life - to the listener, to the person being discussed, and to ourselves.
Too often, we speak what the devil would say - words that have the potential to minister death to everyone concerned. I believe that “unscriptural speaking” causes depression and sickness. Remember words spoken into the atmosphere can cause trouble also - not just words spoken directly to an individual, for if no human person hears, remember that God hears every word. And every word is recorded and will be replayed on judgment day. Order your conversation so that your words minister life. Your reward will be more joy and better health.
Let God use your mouth… not the devil…
My desire Lord is for people to see You in me… may I reflect your love and grace and mercy… may I be more like You Lord everyday with a heart of compassion… You are the reason I live and breathe…
Words of WisdomFather, in the name of Jesus I apply my heart to instruction and my ears to words of knowledge. All Your words are true; all Your righteous laws are eternal. The words of the Lord are flawless, silver refined in a furnace of clay, seven times. My mouth will speak words of wisdom; the utterance from my heart will give understanding. Amen
I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” (Psalm 91:2)
Fruit of My Lips
Lord, by Your Holy Spirit perfect the fruit of my lips. Help me draw thanksgiving forth from my innermost resources; reach down into the most secret places of my heart that I may offer significant thanksgiving to You in the name of Jesus. Amen
Praying for OthersIn the name of Jesus, I thank God for you—every time I pray. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. Amen.
The Tongue of the LearnedHoly Spirit, help me remember that a word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. The Sovereign Lord has given me an instructed tongue to know the word that sustains the weary. He wakens me morning by morning, my ear to listen like one being taught. The Sovereign Lord has opened my ears, I have not been rebellious; have not drawn back. Amen
Guide me in Your truth and faithfulness and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; for You do I wait all the day long.
Changing our World
When believers begin loving as Jesus loves, we will change our world. It may be one person at a time, or you may be sent to other nations to proclaim the gospel. Whatever you do let it be done as a true representative of Jesus. Love is your identification badge!
Father, Your Spirit has anointed us to change our world! Help us to be imitators of You, and bring good news to the poor, and healing to the brokenhearted. Give us loving hearts so we will share Your love bringing freedom to those in bondage. We make it our goal to bring a refreshing to others, and we are refreshed! In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Sing a New SongOut of your innermost being shall flow rivers of living water. This water is for your healing and the healing of those within your realm of influence. This living water will wash away thoughts that would limit your spiritual and emotional growth and your possibilities. What are you speaking; what are you singing? Are you singing songs of self-pity, gloom and doom or songs of joy, peace and love? The choice is yours.
Speak out to others in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, offering praise with your voice and making melody with all your heart to the Lord (Ephesians 5:19) You begin by loving the Lord your God. Choose to be joyful in him and be in high spirits. If you are feeling down, if circumstances are holding you in depression, if you are in the midst of a trial choose to sing a new song to the Lord, and your feelings will be lifted, and you can go on your way holding your head high because the joy of the Lord is your strength. Praise goes before victory!
Heavenly Father, today I am singing a new song. Yesterday with its victories and failures has passed away, and behold on this day all things have become new. I look forward to all things that You send my way -- a new sunrise, new friends, relationships, assignments, responsibilities, blessings, and new opportunities to be a blessing to someone today. I release the past, and will not judge by the former thought patterns and attitudes. Thank You, Lord Jesus, for Your goodness to me. The earth is full of God’s unfailing love. Amen