A few weeks ago, besides reading Revelation -- 5 months of reading and re-reading at this point -- the Lord laid John 17 on me. I am supposed to read it daily. Haven't been perfect in my follow-through, but am trying to become obedient. [Actually, I begin at the last verse of John 16, because it leads into this so clearly.] I read it in the Amplified Bible, which is my usual source.
Well, recently, what's been jumping out to me and hitting my heart has been in verses 11, 21, and 22. It says more than one way that Father and His Son are One and that the plan, goal of bringing Jesus into our lives and the Word of Truth, is to make us ONE as they are ONE. That Believers will be ONE.
How does that work in our present world? Very frustratingly, at least as I view it. Do we have to agree on every tiny bit and piece? No. We have different personalities and ways of life and backgrounds, so we see things differently sometimes. The disciples and apostles connected to Jesus from the beginning saw things differently. And there were conflicts and arguments and heavy discussions. Acts is filled with some of that, as well as some of the other NT Letters. Much was fixed for a while, it seems. And then the battles began again.
Today? My heavens! We have so many theological inputs, opinions, visions, views. So much difference, especially when we consider that social/cultural literacy has increased way over the top in the past 150 years, drawing people together or tossing them apart. And so much that has led to extremism in terms of being "One" with the Lord. I'm not even going to throw in the various denominations or branches or anything similar -- whether Catholic or Protestant. Not going to list the fights. Uh, uh!!! As a history buff and spiritual researcher, I can honestly say that even denominations considered radical/ungodly today, laid lives on the altar in the past as servants of our Lord in various places around the world. And some that were/are considered "not quite bright enough" by many others, laid their lives on the altar of our Lord, also.
What do I want? I want to be part of the "ONE"... I want us to stick to the basic Truth as Jesus presented it in John 17... His heart for us and His heart for the Father and the Father's heart for us. I don't want to moan, and groan, and complain. I want to help break down these barriers and walk with Jesus' and my Father.
Do all people see alike? No. Here's one small example. My dear friend/sister, Susie, that most of you know, has been in my life for 50 years. We come from extremely different backgrounds. We have walked with the Lord in different situations over the years. However, the basics have been the same and the growth in Him and together has been a blessing. When we don't agree, we don't fuss. We discuss, sometimes, but usually we simply allow the Lord to draw the differences into a comfort zone, correct what needs to be, and we don't become "nananana-ish" towards each. [The photo is us with our hands holding a rock together... because we base our lives on The Rock.]
As the world increases in stress and complication... locally and globally... we must turn to John 17 and be ONE in the Father and Son, whatever that requires in our lives to adjust and fit into that Glorious Mix.