My heart aches this week as I watch brothers in my own family fight with each other. The worship war spilled out into the street for everyone to see. An issue that few understand was taken to the world. The world watches and they report. What they say is not, “Those people sure know their Bibles.” They sure don’t say, “They must be followers of Jesus. Just look at their love for each other.” What they say is that the Church of Christ is fighting. Not fighting poverty. Not fighting addiction. Not fighting abuse. Not fighting biblical illiteracy. Not fighting Satan. The Church of Christ is fighting itself.
That’s a lose-lose-lose deal. Both sides in the fight lose. And the world that we are trying to influence for good and for God; the world that is supposed to see the light of Christ in us loses, too. The lost see in us the same kind of fight that they see in their homes, their hangouts, their alleys, their workplaces, their parks and their playgrounds. They have fights all around them all the time. Why come to Christ to find another?
Other churches don’t always do what we believe they ought to do in the way we believe they ought to do it. Still other churches who don’t like what other churches have done don’t always respond in the way that we believe they ought to respond. While all that has happened around us is very disheartening and tragic, this is a trustworthy saying: On our watch right here and now, there are orphans and widows who need care, families who need uniting, poor who need fed and warmed, addicts who need a hand, abused children who need protection, and unbelievers who need faith and hope. And we must serve them.
In our own local church family there are probably six hundred different reactions to the polarization occurring in the body of Christ in the metro – one for every person who assembles in our church home. I hope you’ll say with me that we are heartbroken over the fight, but God has a big job for us to do giving care, direction, food and warmth, a helping hand, protection, and hope to our communities – and we’re a bit busy. Definitely too busy to fight with our brothers. That’s Life at Work!