Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity! - Psalm 133:1
I love how straightforward the message in this verse - how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity. While the term “brothers” does reference those family members, it is a more general terms in this verse - it means everyone. It is good to live in harmony with the people on our lives. By contrast, it’s not good if we’re living in conflict.
Unfortunately, He doesn’t give us exceptions to the rule - we don’t get to say, clearly God didn’t mean him, he’s so rude! Or...I have good reason to be in conflict with her - she gossips! Nope. We are to live in harmony with all people in our lives. We don’t get to pick and choose, we don’t get to say we’re going to strive for peace with certain people, and not with others. We don’t get to choose that someone is too difficult or their sin is too great. We are to be in a state of peace with every one. That includes the people who are doing life with us and those strangers on the road to those people who work with us and live down the road. It’s the people in the checkout line and the people on our news channel. It’s the people leading the protest, and voting against us. We should be in a state of peace with everyone.
I used to read verses like this and ask myself if I was at peace with everyone, and justify that I was because I didn’t have an specific issue with anyone. I didn’t consider myself in conflict with anyone. But when I started asking it from the other person’s perspective, it changed the answer. In other words - would that person think they’re at peace with me? Sadly, I would have to say no in some situations.
Dwell in unity. It’s not a passive verb - it’s an action. We are to do it. It’s not simply stepping out of conflict, or not responding to a text - that’s not dwelling on unity, that’s avoiding conflict. Dwelling in unity is working toward making peace.
In those difficult relationships where it’s hard to love, have you done everything in your life to work toward peace? I can honestly say in those relationships that I try not to stir up additional conflict, but I can’t always work hard for peace. I don’t always work toward peace because it’s hard. Sometimes I don’t know how to navigate sharing God’s truth with people and being at peace.
But I do know God knows how to manage that, so I continue to read His Word, and I continue to lean on His understanding, not my own. He calls me to strive for peace, so today, I’m looking at those relationships in my life where people might not consider my actions or my words to be peaceful. And I’m humbling my heart to confess my pride and my desires, and striving to pick up His peace.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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