Scroll down to see past updates or use the archive links on the bottom left.

Friday, November 17, 2006

UPDATE FOR NOVEMBER 2006

Unity Meeting at Anzio. We asked you to pray for this meeting, and 25 Christians gathered at Anzio on October 21 to accomplish one purpose: seek to answer the Lord's prayer for unity, by getting to know some of the Lord's people. They came from pro-instrument churches of Christ, from non-instrument churches, even from one "Anti" congregation. The tiny Anzio church put together a splendid setting in which these widely differing brethren could talk. There was no official speaker, no cut-and-dried program; we sat in a circle as equals to answer one question: what has Jesus done in your life that makes you His disciple and a child of God? Frankly, if people are not "in Christ," there can be no unity; but if they are in Christ,there should be no division.
One heart-touching moment occurred when one sister beautifully embodied the spirit of our meeting. Her father, an instrumental Church of Christ preacher, had suffered a lot of pain from "Anti" leaders. Directly across the circle from her sat a man also from the same area, whose father was an old-time "Anti-everything" preacher. These two preachers' children had grown up with the "hate or fear the other guy" principle. But at Anzio, this sister freely and determinedly addressed her Anti brother, "We didn?t start this division, but we are responsible for having done nothing to correct it. Please let me ask your forgiveness for my part in maintaining the division." He esponded graciously, and the hugs and tears that followed, changed the spiritual tone of the meeting and promised well for the future. May the Lord?s church follow the good example that these two set! In fact, another unity meeting is being planned for early next year.
You prayed, and the Lord answered. Thanks, and keep it up, because the road is long. A number of churches and individuals chose not to attend the meeting for fear of "contamination," reprisals, criticism, and someone used a telephone campaign to "keep everyone in line." We are not so gullible as to suppose that everything is going to be all right now. There is much praying to do, much visiting, much teaching, lots of tears yet to be shed, much energy to be expended, and much following the leading of the Lord who longs for this unity far more than we do.
The point is: "By this shall all men know you are my disciples: if you have love for one another? I pray that they may be one even as we are, that the world may know that you did send me."