Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering. Matthew 5:23-24 (NASB)
It is said there are only six degrees of separation between any two people in the world. What that means is that if I wanted to get a message to anyone in the world, no matter how far away they lived or how famous they might be, if I could send it to someone I knew, and they could send it to someone they knew, and so on until it reached the intended recipient, it would only go through a maximum of six exchanges.
Sometimes the degrees can be even closer. My hairdresser, Terri Dougela, is the biological sister of Michael Reagan, the adopted son of President Ronald Reagan. My cousin Raymond Bullock is best friends with Billy Ray Cyrus, father of Miley Cyrus. My ex-son-in-law Ken Ward, grew up living next door to Jennifer Garner. My friend Karen McCullem is friends with the Clintons. I also have friends now living in Ghana, Uganda, Romania, and the Dominican Republic.
Despite this obvious interconnectedness (and Facebook and other social media are making the world an even smaller place), most of us still tend to feel isolated much of the time—nobody loves me. Nobody understands me. Nobody cares that I have this problem. What would I do if something happened to me? Who would take care of me? This is especially true in families. Our families are so broken today. Daughters aren’t speaking to mothers, sisters aren’t speaking to brothers, etc. It seems like every family I know has somebody not speaking to somebody else.
I used to love to sing The Family of God, but unfortunately, the same could be said of most churches nowadays. People leave good churches for no other reason than a slight, real or imagined from another church member. If we call ourselves Christians, this ought not to be! God wants, no really He demands that we be reconciled to one another. The model prayer (what we call the Lord’s Prayer) tells us that He forgives us as we forgive others. Do we really want to be forgiven in the same manner that we forgive? Holding onto grudges with a vengeance? Not speaking to someone for twenty years because of something they may not even realize they did?
God says in 2 Corinthians 5:18-21 that we can’t be truly reconciled to God and not be reconciled to each other. He is a God of reconciliation. That’s why Jesus came. “Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He committed to us the word of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors of Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” If we claim to love Christ, we must love one another. 1 John tells us over and over that love is the identifying mark of a Christian. “We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death.” (1 Jong 3:14)
Is there someone in your life you need to be reconciled with today? What are some steps you can take to begin the reconciliation process.
Taboo Tuesday Question of the Day: Who do you know connected to someone famous or far away?