People we don’t like—and our true source of unity

Hebrews 10:24-25 says: “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing…”

Let me say something which is perhaps a bit awkward.

People can be difficult. They can rub us the wrong way. You know it. I know it. In fact, I think it’s one of the reasons why it’s easy to just slough off the church.

When we gather for worship, a group, an outreach initiative, or other kind of event, we are meeting with others who don’t necessarily cheer for the same team, vote for the same party, look the same, have the same background, or even like the same things as you.

So let me highlight two things.

First, our unity is in Christ, not a bunch of lesser things.

Second, we are commanded to ‘love one another’ (John 13:34) even if we don’t like one another. Oh, and here’s a word that we may need to hear to humble our hearts. If you are frequently annoyed by others, others are probably frequently annoyed by you too.

John Calvin said: “There is so much peevishness in almost everyone that individuals, if they could, would gladly make their own churches for themselves, because it is difficult to accommodate oneself to the ways of other people.”*

The next time you gather with God’s people—no matter how big or small that gathering might be—remember that your unity is in Christ.

We are together not because we are the same, but because we have the same Saviour. And he is the one who is doing so much more than we could ever ask or imagine… on our own.


Notes:

–The Up Devotional is published five days a week (Monday to Friday) and returns on November 15, 2021.

–Bible quotes are from the NIV.

–*John Calvin, Calvin’s New Testament Commentaries: Hebrews and 1 and 2 Peter, trans. W.B. Johnson, eds. D Torrance & T. Torrance (Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdman’s, 1963), 144.

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