Let All Be Harmonious – What’s Stopping You?

What's Stopping You from Living in Harmony?God commands us to live in harmony with one another  —  Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another. (1 Pet. 3:8)  — so it must be possible. He provides all the power we need for life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3) which means He will equip and empower us to live in unity despite all of our differences.

Yet, for many, our experience in the Church fails to consistently reflect such harmony. Why? What’s stopping it from happening?

“Self” gets in the way of living harmoniously.

1) Self-promotion

Needing to look better than the next person, to always come out on top, blocks harmonious life together, whereas humility promotes unity.

Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. (Rom. 12:16)

… be compassionate and humble. (1 Pet. 3:8)

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves. (Phil. 2:3)

For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice. (James 3:16)

We can come together on an equal plain when we acknowledge that we are who we are and do what we do because of God’s grace (Rom. 12:3; 1 Cor. 15:10).

2) Self-perpetuation

Looking out for ourselves, having that sense of entitlement, prevents harmony, whereas seeking the good of others brings us together.

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. (Rom. 12:17-18)

Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. (Rom. 15:2)

No one should seek their own good, but the good of others. (1 Cor. 10:24)

Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. (1 Cor. 12:7)

Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else. (1 Thess. 5:15)

We can come together for the good of the whole when we acknowledge that it isn’t all about our own interests and needs.

3) Self-protection

Holding on to our hurts and disappointments, putting up defensive walls around us, tears down harmony whereas forgiving one another, even doing good to those who have done wrong, opens the door to reconciliation and unity.

Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Rom. 12:19-21)

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. (Eph. 4:32)

Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. (1 Pet. 3:9)

We can come together, breaking down those defensive walls and letting people in, when we trust the Lord to take care of us.

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