Unity

This morning I was walking on water in the shower of course and I was thinking about heaven. Imagine that when we die and go to heaven St. Peter stops us at the golden gate and asks “What Denomination are You?” And you think really hard before you answer and you say “Well, I’m Baptist”. Then He replies “Go and stand behind door number 7”. And as you are walking away wondering “What’s behind door number 7”? You overhear the next person in line tell St. Peter that she’s a Catholic, and he says to her, “Go stand behind door number 17”.

Now you are really beginning to worry. “Is 17 a better place to be than 7? So you stop, and you wait to listen as a few more people meet St. Peter. “Well, I’m Methodist a young man says, ” So St. Peter replies, “Go stand behind door number 77”. “Well, I’m a Lutheran, replies an old lady in her late 70’s. Go and stand behind door number 57” says St. Peter.

As hour after hour passes, you watch thousands upon thousands enter beyond the gates and line up behind thousands of doors labeling their denominations. You finally get back into line as you hear the final trumpet sound; everyone around you is crying and weeping with fear wondering if they are in the right line. “Are we standing behind the right door? A small child asks you. As you answer, you begin to cry and say, “I do not know! I was baptized Catholic when I was your age, but then my family converted to the Lutheran faith when I was in high school, and now I am a Baptist because my wife is a Baptist”. “O my goodness, you say as you fall to your knees crying out, “Jesus, it’s not my fault! My parents made me convert to their faith; then, my wife’s father insisted that I be baptized into the Baptist faith when we married.

Father, forgive me”, you cry. Then suddenly, all the doors open, and as you walk in, you see Jesus standing in the middle of a very large room. You begin to realize that all the doors are in the same building and on the same floor. You start to wipe the tears from your eyes. Jesus looks at you and says, “Forgive you for what, labeling yourself? I told you there was only one way into heaven, and that is through me”. Then Jesus says, “I just figured sticking all the denominations on the doors would make you all feel as if you were in the right place”. Jesus smiles, and says, “Maybe I should have just put the name Christian on all the doors; it would have been a lot easier for me anyway”.

So many of us get caught up in our human nature and we begin to separate ourselves because of “labels”! The only thing that Christians should be separated from is the sin of this world and everything that does not line up with God’s holy word.

This past weekend as we launched the Bride of Christ Conference in Columbia, TN, I read this story before our guests and requested three precious women from different denominations help me light the unity candle that was placed on the communion table. It was a powerful moment when we had a Presbyterian, Pentecostal and a Baptist light the candles and unite the flame together on one candle signifying unity amongst believers. Every denomination was in God’s house that day and God’s power filled the place and our hearts. LOVE FOR ONE ANOTHER AS I HAVE LOVED YOU! (John 13:34-35)

I want to thank John Joseph Griffin, Publisher of Christian Living Magazine who I had the pleasure to work with for many years that wrote that fictional story that holds so much power of God’s truth. Don’t you think it is time to put down the labels and pick up our bibles and walk together in agreement on what truly matters ~ Jesus?

Now UNITY is something to seek…. Blessings…