Two little girls, of two different races, walking down the hall holding hands, that’s what I saw one morning. As I passed them, one told me (with genuine joy), “This is my sister!”
Young children are many things, but they aren’t naturally biased.
Can we all get along?
The apostle Paul thought so. “The entire law is summed up in a single command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ — Galatians 5:14 (NIV). He then warned the church at Galatia that if they kept “biting and devouring” each other, they would destroy each other.
Next, he offers the solution: “So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” — Galatians 5:16
Only through the power of the supernatural, by God’s grace, can we love others as well as we love ourselves.
🙏 Heavenly Father: please help us to be like those two little girls, today and every day. For, as the song says, 🎶”They’ll know we are Christians by our love.”🎶 AMEN
My grandfather was a huge fan of Southern Gospel music. As a kid I tagged along with him to “singings” as he called them. These were officially known as Quartet Conventions (as I later learned), where one group after another took the stage to sing in four part harmony.
There were old standards like, “Just a Little Talk With Jesus,” and “On the Jericho Road.” But also uncommon tunes that some in attendance had never heard. Many of the groups stuck around, after their sets, to take requests from the audience.
One quartet in particular, the Journeymen, never missed a beat. No matter what the crowd requested, they sang it in perfect harmony. Once I asked the *bass singer, a bearded giant of a man, “How do you do that—sing the right notes all the time?”
He got down on my level, and looking me in the eye he said:
“If it’s in the chord, it’s from the Lord!”
He explained: “Son, the crowd doesn’t know how the harmony goes. So I find some good bass notes and sing them like I mean it.”
I can easily hear a new Christian asking a more mature believer the same thing, “How do you do that— live a reverent life before God all the time?
Answer: You stay in harmony (the chord). Make the main thing the MAIN THING.
Seek first the kingdom of God. (Matthew 6:33) Offer yourself as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God. (Romans 12:1) Here’s a harmonic triad: act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with your God. (Micah 6:8) Love others as Christ loves you. (John 15:12)
And the list goes on…
The point is, we don’t have to be perfect in our walk with God. Just stay in the chord (on the right path) and He will see you through.(Psalm 119:105)
Perhaps this musical motif is a good picture for abiding in Christ. When Jesus said, “Remain in me, and I will remain in you” (John 15:4) it reminds me of, “If it’s in the chord, it’s from the Lord.”
Stay on the main streets with God (like branches from the Vine), and the side streets will take care of themselves.
“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.” (Hebrews 12:2a
Please help me find some more good “bass” notes. What scriptural “nuggets” would you share with a new Christian?
My encounter with the bass singer is historical fiction (plausible, but contrived to fit the story). I came up with the saying, “If it’s in the chord…” many years later, based on my memories of attending quartet conventions with my grandfather.
If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.
The blogger, poojaG, has a weekly feature on, lifesfinewhine, called Six Word Story. Awhile back, her weekly entry read: “It just keeps on getting crazier.”
PoojaG didn’t speculate about the cause of the craziness, but my mind immediately went to the social upheaval caused by COVID-19 and inflamed racial tensions stoked by police brutality against minorities. Later, the divisive presidential election here in the U. S. rounded out the ultimate cray cray trifecta.
However, despite the chaos caused by current events, I submit to you that craziness is NOT the default setting of God’s creation.
As we know from the account in Genesis, the heavens and the earth were once formless and empty and darkness was over the surface of the deep (Genesis 1:3). That sounds chaotic. However, you know the story, God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. “God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness.”
At God’s command, chaos turned to calm.
Submission #2: God is the supreme ruler over ALL of time–including ours (Isaiah 46:10b,11b).
Yes, in spite of recent developments, the God of the universe remains on the throne. And that means the cure for crazy is still calm (peace). And the best place to find God’s peace is still with the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6).
As the time of His death neared, Jesus knew the events of His betrayal and execution would plunge his disciples into grief and despair, but He also knew their grief would turn to joy after His resurrection (John 16:16-33). Furthermore, the Holy Spirit would come–as promised, after His departure–to guide His followers into all truth. (John 14:16; 25-26)
That same Spirit of God’s truth is still at work today—bringing peace in our time.
I have told you these things, so that you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
John 16:33 (NIV)
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
John 14:27 (NIV)
For a story about how to be a peacemaker in difficult times, please read peace by piece.