King David writes in today’s Bible Journaling verse, “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony!” (Psalm 133:1 CSB) As Christians, we are called to a life of peace, harmony, and unity. Jesus is that source of peace. In John 16:33, Jesus told His disciples, “I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.” (CSB) Did you catch what Jesus said? He said that IN HIM we can have peace! That means that once we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we can find peace in Him. He gives us a life of peace. Then we are to exhibit that peace and harmony to those around us. We are to actively work on living at peace or be in unity with others. Sometimes this can be difficult, but we are to try our best to be united, as Believers, neighbors, family members, friends, and even enemies.
The Christians in Rome lived in tumultuous times, much as we are today, but they had it much worse than we have here in America because they were being killed for their faith. The Apostle Paul told them, “Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.” (Romans 12:16-18 ESV)
Paul also told the Colossians, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.” (Colossians 3:12-13 ESV) As I look at that verse, I see that the key to living harmoniously with those around us is to have a loving heart, be humble, have patience, exhibit kindness, and if by chance we have a disagreement with someone, be ready to forgive! Did you notice that these are all Fruits of the Spirit, except for forgiveness, which is a result of showing the Fruits of the Spirit? When we exhibit the Fruits of the Spirit in our lives, we are more likely to live in harmony with those around us.
We are to be unified as Believers. Instead of a church that fights over the color of the carpeting, we need to step back, come to an agreement even though it means we may not get our way, and be loving. If harsh words are spoken, then forgive one another and move forward. If we disagree with someone over something like politics, be brave enough to agree to disagree without animosity. This is an example of how Jesus would act.
It only takes a little spark to start a fire, and it only takes one person to change the atmosphere in the room. Be that person who changes the atmosphere in the room and is in harmony with those around you.