Knit Together

Click. Click. Slide. Click. Click. Slide. That was the sound of my childhood, sitting on the couch next to my mother as she busied herself with knitting. She was a wonderful knitter. I remember watching her knit every evening from the time I was little. Our family still enjoys “Grandmere’s” beautiful lacy throws and blankets in every color combination imaginable. In my closet is an intricate winter sweater that she knit for her own mother one year for Christmas, which was passed down to me. The idea of taking different skeins of yarn in their individual packages and weaving them together into something wearable or useful still fascinates me.

In his letter to the church in Corinth, Paul reminded the people that they were meant to be “knit together.” This passage from 1 Corinthians is painful to read. Paul addressed the many divisions that had formed in the church in Corinth and basically told them to knock it off. People had aligned themselves with different church leaders and were standing in opposition to each other. Their unity had completely unraveled. Division in the church?? Say it isn’t so

It is so.

The history of the Christian church in America is filled with schisms, mergers, disaffiliations, and strife. My own denomination is going through a time of splits and separations, and it is extremely painful. United Methodism has become Untied Methodism and it breaks this pastor’s heart. I grieve the fact that we are not meeting Paul’s standard for how a church should behave:

1 Corinthians 1 (New Revised Standard Version)

10 Now I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you be in agreement and that there be no divisions among you but that you be knit together in the same mind and the same purpose.11 For it has been made clear to me by Chloe’s people that there are quarrels among you, my brothers and sisters. 12 What I mean is that each of you says, “I belong to Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Cephas,” or “I belong to Christ.” 

13 Has Christ been divided?

Here is the heart of the issue. Christ has not been divided. Christ calls us into a “oneness” of thought, belief, and purpose. One of the last things he did before he made his way to the cross was to pray that his disciples and those who come later, meaning us, would be “one.”

John 17 (Common English Bible)

21 I pray they will be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. I pray that they also will be in us, so that the world will believe that you sent me.22 I’ve given them the glory that you gave me so that they can be one just as we are one. 23 I’m in them and you are in me so that they will be made perfectly one. Then the world will know that you sent me and that you have loved them just as you loved me.

We have utterly and completely failed.

Paul continued his argument with the Corinthian church:

1 Corinthians 1 (New Revised Standard Version)

Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 14 I thank God that I baptized none of you except Crispus and Gaius, 15 so that no one can say that you were baptized in my name. 16 I did baptize also the household of Stephanas; beyond that, I do not know whether I baptized anyone else. 17 For Christ did not send me to baptize but to proclaim the gospel—and not with eloquent wisdom, so that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its power.

18 For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

What can you do to bring unity and harmony to your world? Does everything have to be fought over? Can you just agree to disagree with someone rather than fracture the relationship?

God desires that we would be one in our families, our schools, our workplaces, and our churches. Is God calling you to change your attitude?

Reflecting God’s Beauty by Michelle Robertson

2 comments

  1. Randy Hudson · 14 Days Ago

    Betsy, a long time ago you brought us back to church with your unconditional love for us, showing us God’s grace. What I wish people would realize is that these fights within the church are driving people away in droves. At least to me, the important thing is bringing people into the church so that they could know of God’s love. I think that is the main thing and we need to keep the main thing the main thing.

    Like

    • Betsy · 14 Days Ago

      Thank you for saying that, my friend. And I totally agree.

      Like

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