My wife and I have decided to read a book together – it is not new, rather it has been sitting on our shelf for quite a few years. In fact, we bought each of our children and their spouses the same book for them to read together too. Here is the summary of the Genesis reading —
“Then Noah got drunk, his kids got in trouble, and their descendants— a capable bunch who developed civilization with the arts, industry, and agriculture —became proud. Drawing from the same energy with which Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, they set about to build their lives into a satisfying, organized
existence without Me in the center.
“So they erected this silly tower to rally everyone together. Their goal was unity with each other without union with Me. They thought they could become friends with each other before first becoming friends with Me. It can’t be done. To make the point, I ruined their plans by making them speak different
languages; I interfered with a plan that would never work. – 66 Love Letters, Larry Crabb
I have started working with a new company and ministry this year and they are big on love and unity. At some point, when the “unity” message was coming in strong, I had to remind them of the story of Babel and the “unity” story there was not so good.
Come, let Us go down there and confuse[r] their language[s] so that they will not understand one another’s speech.”[t]So from there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth, and they stopped building the city. Therefore its name is called Babylon,[u] for there the Lord confused the language of the whole earth, and from there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth. – Genesis 11:7-9 HCSB
Here God had to separate their unity for their own good. He needed to remind them that He was God and they were not. I think that unity is good, and I know God wants me to be in unity with other followers of Jesus, but I believe that the foundation of that unity is in Him, not in me. My unity with others is based on one Lord, one Spirt and one God. It is definitely not about glorifying myself.
In the parable of the sower, Mark 4:1-9, the discussion of good soil being open to receiving the word of God indicates my ability to have a soft heart to do so. Love and unity is like that, it is like dew in my life. It changes me, makes things grow in my life. It cools down the heat of anger or passion that may want to take over. It is refreshing.
Father, if I am going to experience unity with others, I need unity with You. I cannot be a real friend to anyone if I am not yet a real friend of Yours. May Your Holy Spirit invite me into Your presence each day and I look forward to walking with You and getting to know You more. Amen.