Unity

Unity. Of all the things He could have prayed for, Jesus cried out to the Father for unity. As He prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice, Jesus bowed His heart before the Father and interceded for us. In John 17:20-23 (NLT) we hear Him say: I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in Me through their message.  I pray that they will all be one, just as You and I are one—as You are in me, Father, and I am in You. And may they be in Us so that the world will believe You sent Me. I have given them the glory You gave Me, so they may be one as We are one.  I am in them and You are in Me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that You sent Me and that you love them as much as you love Me.

His heart desired unity. He prayed that you and I, His followers, would be one. He longed for us to be unified, like He and the Father are. His plan is that His Body would function as a single unit, united by His heart and His desires, moving and flowing in solidarity in Him and through Him.

Jesus prayed for our unity because He knew it would be the key to our success. He knew that the only way we could advance would be to operate as one.  He knew that without unity, it would impossible to accomplish anything. He knew that without unity, His Body would be disjointed and splintered. And, Jesus also knew that in a disjointed and splintered state, we’d be an easy target for the enemy and susceptible to his deceptive strategies.

So what does unity look like? Does unity mean that you agree with me? Or that I agree with you? Or that together we agree with the leader? Does it mean we lay down our opinion to pick up the majority’s? I don’t think so. I believe unity means, we agree with Him. Unity is being on the same page with Abba. And solidarity is evident as together we say what He says, go where He goes and do what He does. We are unified as we live out His plan.

How does this happen? We step into unity as we practice 2Chronicals 7:14 (NLT) Then if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land. Certainly, unity is developed through prayer. But specifically, unity is achieved through humility. Humble prayer. This means we don’t come to Abba with our agenda. We don’t spend our conversations with Him telling Him what we want or what we think. We are not sharing our plan. We are not taking our preconceived notions and opinions into the prayer closet.

Humble prayer means we enter with a heart that says: I do not have any answers. I do not know what is best. I need Your wisdom and guidance. I choose to want what You want. Please tell me what that is.  Then we sit and listen. And, in our silence He reveals His plans. As we leave the prayer closet, we follow His plan with His power.

As we humbly pray, He will reveal His plan. And the plan He reveals to me is the same plan He will reveal to you. If we disagree, one of us is not listening. Therefore, we return to the prayer closet, determined to listen until our heart is unified with His.

Humble prayer positions us for a move of God. Our unity with Him brings us to a place of restoration.

And, living this way will resolve so many issues within the Body of Christ. It would mean that we would stop fighting over everything from the color of our carpet to the type of music we worship to. We’ll no longer bicker over doctrinal differences or how to exegete a particular passage. And we’ll stop squabbling over which political candidate to vote for. (insert eye-roll here)

Which brings me to the point of this post: Abba has a plan. He has already chosen the one He desires to be in office. Shockingly, it may not be the person we think it should be. It may not be the person we identify with politically. It may not be the one we would personally choose. It may be the one we don’t like. But it doesn’t matter what we think or what our political stance is, because the one He has chosen is the perfect one for the job. He knows what we need and He knows what we cannot see. And, if we will humble ourselves in prayer and listen to His heart, He will tell us who to vote for.

It’s not about what I want. It’s not about your opinion. It’s not about what we think. It’s about His divine and perfect plan.

As we lay down our ideologies, opinions, perspective and feelings, we – the Body of Christ – will be a force to be reckoned with. When we have been in humble prayer, as a unified body we’ll exit the prayer closet and enter the voting booth and change the course of our nation.

Now – stop for a moment and think big picture. If we, the Body of Christ are unified, imagine the possibilities! To start, we’ll no longer look foolish to the world. When we say we heard from God, we’ll all be saying and doing the same thing, instead of giving the impression that God is confused or senile. In unity, we’ll powerfully execute the Great Commission with precision, making powerful disciples. We’ll step into the enemy’s territory and put an end to his destructive plans.

As we live in humble prayer, unified under His plan and purpose, we’ll be agents of change. We’ll change our life. We’ll change our families. We’ll change our local church. We’ll change our community. We’ll change our nation. We’ll change the world. This is how we become world-changes – through humble prayer that brings us into unity, enabling us to cohesively move as one.

So, with that, I am telling you who to vote for.

Vote for the one Abba has chosen. Get into your prayer closet and ask Him who that is with all bias aside. Listen. And then vote for that person. Even if they aren’t the one you’d have chosen yourself. This is unity.

And then, let’s live that way. In unity, saying what He says. Going where He goes. Doing what He does.

 

 

If you’d like to hear more on prayer and politics, I recommend this message by my son, Stefan. It will certainly open your eyes and adjust your perspective.

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September 27, 2016

tuesday text

Thought to share: Remember – I AM your strength. Because you live in ME and I live in you, your strength comes from ME. You don’t need to do this on your own. Don’t worry if you don’t have the energy or stamina to endure. I AM providing that for you. I AM your energy and stamina. I AM strengthening your inner being, enabling you to thrive in any environment. Whatever you are facing, you are up for the challenge because I AM your strength.
1John 4:13 (NLT) And God has given us His Spirit as proof that we live in Him and He in us.
Philippians 4:13 (Amp)  I can do all things [which He has called me to do] through Him who strengthens and empowers me [to fulfill His purpose—I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency; I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him who infuses me with inner strength and confident peace.]
Psalm 28:7 (NLT) The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust Him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.

September 20, 2016

tuesday text

Thought to share: You can trust ME. I AM not fickle like humans are. I do not change with the blowing of the wind. I AM steadfast, faithful and constant. I always keep MY word. I do not fail. So relax in MY promises and watch as I faithfully care for your needs.

Hebrews 13:8 (NLT) Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Deuteronomy 7:9 (NLT) Understand, therefore, that the LORD your God is indeed God. He is the faithful God who keeps His covenant for a thousand generations and lavishes His unfailing love on those who love Him and obey His commands.

September 13, 2016

tuesday text

Thought to share: tell ME what you want to say – not what you think I want to hear. I know you know the “right” words, but I want to hear your words. I already know everything in your heart. I know your deepest thoughts. Nothing is a secret to ME. So, be real with ME. Pour your heart out to ME. This is a key to authentic relationship with ME.

Psalm 139:2 (NCV) You know when I sit down and when I get up. You know my thoughts before I think them.
Psalm 62:8 (NLT) O my people, trust in Him at all times. Pour out your heart to Him, for God is our refuge.

September 6, 2016

tuesday text

Thought to share: I know your problems seem heavy, endless and hopeless. But in reality, they are light and momentary. Your life is but a mist, and this season will pass quickly. Rest in ME and trust ME with the journey. Rely on ME for direction. You are able to rest  and connect with ME through thankfulness – be thankful in your circumstances and for your circumstances. This opens your eyes to MY hand at work in your life!

2Corinthians 4:17 (NLT) For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!
James 4:14 (NLT) How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone.
1Thessalonians 5:18 (NLT) Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 5:20 (NLT) And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.