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Unhealthy Competition

Thousands of beautiful and historical church buildings are scattered throughout the landscape of Ireland. Sometimes when I’m driving past a church building, particularly one that is hundreds of years old, I often find myself wondering how God has moved amongst the people of that congregation throughout the generations. Yet I am also reminded (more so over the past couple of years), that we, as believers in Christ, are His church, His hands and feet in our community. We are His representatives, carriers of His light to those who may never walk in through the doors of any church building.

Throughout some parts of Ireland at least, there has been this deep-seated determination to always be right. This has led many to be unbending towards the political parties they align with or even within the church or denomination they attend. Sometimes there is also an unhealthy pride identifying as being a part of a denomination rather than to be known as a follower of Jesus. This hasn’t helped with decades of church division and unfortunately has led to competition and comparison instead of, support, love and encouragement between denominations. Yet when it is all stripped back, I am sure most denominations throughout this land will agree that Jesus Christ died for each one of us, was raised to life and today is sitting at the right hand of God our Father.

In Ephesians 6:18 we read:

“Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.”

No matter what our theological differences are, we are told to pray for all believers, for our brothers and sisters in Christ who are also part of Christ’s Church in our local community and land. Let’s humble ourselves and pray for fellow believers in our communities, that they would walk in the fullness of Christ, be encouraged and strengthened and as the Spirit leads them, have opportunities to share the hope that is within them. Pray that your community would see new believers come to Christ and that they would have the opportunity to choose which fellowship is the right fit for them without judgment or criticism. Why not pray also for local fellowships as you walk or drive past their buildings, pray for their leadership, that they would be led by the Holy Spirit and that the word of God would impact and build up those who listen and would spread beyond their walls. Let’s see the Christian communities throughout this land united together in prayer for a move of God!

Father, I thank You for the rich history of truth throughout Ireland. Father, I pray that You would move in all churches within our communities and throughout our land. Father prompt me and remind me to pray for fellowships in my local community, that they would thrive and share the full gospel of Jesus Christ to those who need to hear it. In Jesus’ name, I pray, Amen.

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