I had a very unique, amazing experience happen to me this past weekend. I met a brother that I didn’t know I had, didn’t even know he existed. Wild, huh? No, I didn’t meet a biological brother, but a spiritual brother. In fact, by the end of the weekend, I had personally met at least 15-20 of my brothers. Sharing what God has done one-on-one, face-to-face, eye-to-eye, heart-to-heart. And in those moments, I get a glimpse of Heaven.
Several churches brought me in to do my Knight’s Code conference. Men from different communities, different churches, different denominations, and different backgrounds all came together in one place, but for just one purpose—to accelerate our growth as men of God. Even though I was the speaker/teacher at the event, I am a better Christ-follower and man, because of meeting my new brothers. Iron sharpened iron. I also believe I have made some new friends that I can now call on, as they can with me.
Over the past several decades, we have figured out so many clever ways to divide ourselves as men in the church over issues like:
Along with various other splinters and fragments that come down to petty differences, not passionate doctrine. And notably, also over the past several years, men in the church have been increasingly on the decline. . . . Think maybe there’s a co-relation? I think so. . . . Think maybe we’ve been wrong? Yeah. . . . Maybe focusing on the wrong things? . . . For sure.
Over about 6 hours, God knit our hearts together as one Body of men—because we focused on Him and the unity He brings. We focused on the fact that we are broken, needy, depraved men in need of a Savior, no one better than the other, and none having a corner on the market in spiritual matters. We put the focus, even for just a few hours, in the right place, on the Right(eous) One.
Think about the brotherhood aspect of Christianity for a moment. Think of what might happen if we focused on the majors and let go of the minors. The majors being the foundational points of the inspired Word of God, the saving grace of Christ alone, and the promise of an abundant, obedient life, and an eternal home in Heaven.
How many brothers exist in your town, right around you, that you don’t know, maybe even refuse to know, because you’ve focused on division when you should be thinking about multiplication? On subtraction, where it should be addition?
There is an amazing family out there that you belong to and they belong to you. You have brothers out there that can love, support, pray, and lift you up, as you can them. And let us not forget—we all have the same Father anyway.
You were all called to travel on the same road and in the same direction, so stay together, both outwardly and inwardly. You have one Master, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who rules over all, works through all, and is present in all. Everything you are and think and do is permeated with Oneness. —Ephesians 4:3-6 MSG
(Parts of this post were written in 2012 for the article Brothers in Arms, but a very similar experience this past weekend prompted me to go back and update it for 2013.)