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Reconciliation Defined
Theme of the week: Racial Unity: It's Worth the Effort
Tuesday, January 22, 2013

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Key Bible Verse: If someone says, "I love God," but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is a liar; for if we don't love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? (1 John 4:20) Dig Deeper: 1 John 4:7-21

Biblical racial reconciliation may be defined as addressing the sin that caused the divide for the purpose of bonding together across racial lines based on a shared commitment to Jesus Christ with the goal of service to others.

[But unfortunately, many of us] are more concerned about achieving the American dream than we are about letting the rule of God remake segregated churches and denominations. In so doing, we have limited the degree to which the healing balm of God's grace flows freely from us into our communities, and ultimately throughout our land. If what we call racial reconciliation is not transforming individuals, families, churches, and communities, then it is merely sociology with a little Jesus sprinkled on top.

In a nation whose middle name is "Me" and where "time is money," the very structure of our society impedes many of us in our pursuit of authentic connections. This is even more so when it comes to developing relationships with others in a different culture than our own. But oneness is worth the effort. This is because oneness is the preeminent vehicle through which God displays his power, his presence, and his glory.

—Tony Evans in Oneness Embraced

My Response: How might I pursue "authentic connections" with people of other races and cultures? What difficulties might I face if I do this? What might be the benefits?

Thought to Apply: If men would consider not so much wherein they differ, as wherein they agree, there would be far less uncharitableness and angry feeling in the world.—Joseph Addison (British politician, writer)

Adapted from Oneness Embraced (Moody, 2011) by permission. All rights reserved by the copyright holder and/or the publisher. May not be reproduced.

Prayer for the Week
Dear Heavenly Father, open my eyes to areas of racial and cultural insensitivity in my life; show me what steps I need to take to model racial reconciliation and unity in my church and community.

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