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October 8, 2012

Today’s Our Daily Bread contains a passage from the Book of Acts. In it we see that Paul and Barnabus had a serious disagreement about whether to bring Mark with them on their next trip to strengthen churches. Now apparently Mark had flaked on the last trip and Paul wasn’t trying to have that happen again. But Barnabus wanted to give Mark another shot. Paul and Barnabus got so heated with each other that they split up – Barnabus took Mark and Paul took another guy named Silas.

As I was reading the passage, the argument between Paul and Barnabus struck me. They got so fed up with each other that they threw up the deuces to each other. But they were all still focused on their mission of serving God. Eventually Mark became such a great servant that Paul recognized his value later on (2 Timothy 4:11).

Barnabus, Paul, and Mark serve as excellent examples for us. Sometimes when we get into arguments with each with don’t just split from each other – we split from the mission too. You know how it is – Sister Jenkins and Sister Johnson both sing in the choir. Both of them have certain ideas on what songs to sing or how the choir should operate. A heated argument occurs, and the two split. But instead of just walking away, one of them leaves the choir or worse, leaves the church altogether. Or Brother Jackson and Brother Jones have a disagreement over how money is being spent in the church. After a heated argument one of them decides that he “doesn’t want to deal with church folk” anymore.

These are general examples, but how similar stories do you know of – or are involved in yourself? We must always remember that our mission is not to do which gives us the greatest pleasure, our mission is to serve God. At all times. That means loving each other and embracing each other even when we’re upset with each other. Jesus himself commanded us to love each other (John 15:17).

We cannot let disagreements or even fights get in the way of our service to God. That means loving and serving and edifying each other even when we don’t feel like it. Arguments happen. Disagreements happen. Fights happen. That’s okay. Just make sure to continue serving the loving God through loving and serving everyone.

From → Faith

One Comment
  1. We are after the heart of Christ, not of man. Focus on self and on what others are doing/not doing will take us away from what we should be doing–following Christ’s example, living out the Word of God. Even with the disagreement between Barnabas and Paul concerning Mark, it was not something that hindered the real mission as you stated. If it is in Christ that we do things, we will not give in to such contention; if by chance we do (cause we are human), it is by His love we can forgive and reconcile.
    Continued contention demonstrates a possible lack of growth in the individual’s Christian understanding and walk.
    Oh, such imperfect and prideful humans are we!

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