I had a hard time coming up with words to use and since unknowingly I got behind I had to come up with two words for two hard letters – U and V. I chose Unity for U and Victory for V – my Facebook friends helped and I also turned to my in Bible concordance to come up with something.
There are so many things that need unity – families need to be united in what they want to accomplish, co-workers need to be united in how they work together to maintain a peaceful work environment, and churches are to be united to – no divisions, sadly that is where we find the most dis-unity which then leads to breakdowns of unity in other facets like the family and more.
“Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity!” Psalm 133:1 ESV
“….eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:3 ESV
“….until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the same stature of the fullness of Christ.” Ephesians 4:13 ESV
“Finally all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.” I Peter 3:8 and 9
Of course, there is also united and unite – we should unite our hearts and mind to Christ’s so that we can live like He would want us to and when we are out of unity with Him we can tell by our actions and our words. By these verses above one can see that if we having unity with Christ there will be peace and if we have unity with one another then we will be blessed. Looking at the verse prior to Ephesians 4:13 it tells us that God gave us the body of Christ so that we could have unity of faith – not all the divisions that occur today (that is man made and part of the dis-unity that many feel within the church).
When one witnesses a discord, a fight, or a division there is usually a non-united group somewhere in all the mess. Did your church split? Did you divorce a spouse? Are your children always fighting? There is not unity – the Lord wants us to have unity.
I think, personally, that the Lord wants us to be in unity with everyone – that isn’t to say that we will always agree with everyone else, we can disagree with someone and still keep a sense of unity, of peace. I think it’s especially important for those of us who call ourselves Christians, if those outside see the discord that happens why would they want anything to do with us? Unity within the church not only benefits us as it gives a like minded church family (I’m speaking of Salvation issues, not non-Salvation issues here), a place that should support us in times of need and rejoice with us in the good times. Of course that also means we can share the light of Christ with others, as people are drawn to peace and unity and then that glorifies our Father.
I have no way of linking these two words together, I’m sure if I thought on it long enough I could but I’ve already gotten behind and had a hard enough time coming up with these words. So it’s on to Victory.
I think we’ve all had victory over something – I know that I’ve had victory over abuse by a boyfriend, victory over depression – and I know now, even if I didn’t then, that the Lord is the one who gave me that victory.
“….a bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory.” Matthew 12:20 ESV (this was a fulfillment of the prophecy spoken by Isaiah)
“When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on the immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory. O death where is your victory? O death where is your sting?’ ” I Corinthians 15:54 and 55 ESV
“But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” I Corinthians 15:57 ESV
“For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world – our faith.” I John 5:4 ESV
So we can all have victories – even those who aren’t Christians can have victories in their life – but what about the ultimate victory? The victory that Christ won on the cross at Calvary? I like to think about the verse above from I Corinthians – I was mortal and now I’m immortal – how cool is that? You can have your vampires and zombies, I’ve got the real deal – if you are a Christian and have fully accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior and live your days for Him you are immortal.
That’s better than any vampire story!
When you accept Christ you’ve put on the imperishable, the immortal. Yes, physically here on earth you’ll die, your loved ones will mourn you – but you, your spirit will be with Christ. He’s always won victory and conquered death, all we have to do is accept that gift. Most of us don’t want to think about death, and even my husband says he’s afraid to die – honestly I’m not. When one has a secure faith and knows with assurance that when they leave this world they will be present with Christ, how can one be afraid?
I can be afraid of how I’ll go – will it be painful or peaceful? Sudden or drawn out? Who will care for my children if they are still young? But I also know that being afraid and having a fearful spirit is not from Christ it is from Satan, himself and if I wallow in being afraid I won’t get done the work that needs done for the Kingdom. Don’t get me wrong I want to live a long, long life – I would love to see my great, great, great grandchildren – but I also know that I will have victory over death.
So lets celebrate or little victories – a successful recovery from a surgery. Another pregnancy after years of infertility (just and example here, people). A marriage. A new house. Because as we celebrate these little victories we get a taste of just how great the victory over death will be, and it will be even greater than what we have on earth!
(c) 2014, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws