We had a wonderful chapel today, a speaker (I can't recall his name, but will insert it here, later) who was once a part of the Acton Institute. He spoke from Joshua 22 and also told the story of the USS Maine and how the explosion which took place on it, killing all 266 men, may have been due to the furnace being next to the gun powder, or for other reason, other than Spain purposefully doing it. Though investigated time and again, there is no conclusive evidence as to how or why that actually happened. But at the time it was concluded that the ship had been attacked, and so began the Spanish-American War.
Back to Joshua 22, the nine and one half tribes bent over backwards to understand just why the two and half tribes of Israel, east of the Jordan had actually built an altar, in clear violation of God's command, and on their side of the Jordan! Before going to war against them, they even graciously offered that if things were bad in the land east of the Jordan where they had settled, they could cross over and share the land west of the Jordan with the rest of Israel. So they wanted to avoid war. The two and a half tribes were able to explain that the altar was not for use as an altar, but as a reminder to the nine and a half tribes, that the tribes on the other side of the Jordan were too, the Lord's people.
The speaker adeptly applied this to the church: how we are one body, with one faith, one Lord, one baptism, one God and Father. But how we often don't live this out well before the world. And a big part of that is failing to be completely humble, gentle and patient, bearing with each other in love, making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.
I know I can fail because I can too easily jump to conclusions. First of all, I need to check from the outset any thoughts I might have. Instead of putting any weight on any surmisings I may have, I instead need to pray, and then perhaps ask questions to really find out what any problem might be.
If we fail to do this, we can be miserable, quickly. We can be prone to the devil's lies, and indeed we're good enough at deceiving ourselves without any help. I did this yesterday, by thinking something was evident when it was not. Fortunately it was fairly easily resolved, but it contributed to some misery for me.
What about you? What would you like to communicate concerning communication?