Unity in Brotherly Love

Meditating on Psalm 133.

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brethren to dwell together in unity! (Ps. 133:1)

When I became a born-again Christian and began to serve the Lord in Jesus Miracle Crusade International Ministry, my experience of religion changed dramatically. Though I grew up going to church (Catholic), I was used to living in a hypocritical environment. Then I became an adult and a hypocrite myself: “having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof… lover of oneself, lover of money, boaster, proud… disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving… without self-control…lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God… always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (see 2 Tim. 3: 1-7).

But in the congregation of the saints of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is entirely different. Everyone walks (or does his/her best to walk by the grace of God) in the Holy Spirit, praying and working to know and follow the will of God. And dwelling in unity bound by love. Brothers and sisters as one body in one Spirit with one hope.

Years ago while we were on our way to our first crusade in the province, we passed by an outreach of our church which was along the way. We attended the mid-week service there. It was our first visit to the outreach. After the service, one of the workers who managed the outreach, a sister in Christ,  approached us, took my hands in both of hers, and implored us to stay the night and have supper with them. Dusk was gathering and they couldn’t imagine us continuing on our trip. But I assured her gently that we would be fine and would be spending the night in a hotel nearer our destination. I knew they had a lot of work to do and I didn’t want us to be a burden to them, but I saw in her eyes the sincerity of their love for the brethren.

In another crusade in another province, the preacher and his family assigned in the outreach there arranged for our lodging: a spacious guesthouse surrounded by trees and yonder were mountains which brought fresh breeze that invigorated us. A day after the last day of crusade, a Monday, we were packing our luggage in haste and hauling them into our van. My husband Felix needed to attend a staff meeting in our company. When we were about to settle in our seats, the preacher and his family arrived with pots and dishes full of home cooked, delicious food. They prepared a modest feast for us before we went home!

When we attempted to explain that we needed to be on our way, their faces fell. It was then that I heard the gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit, “Stay and eat what they have prepared. The staff meeting in the office is not that important. Love and fellowship with the beloved brethren are what matters more at this moment.” We all alighted from the van and went inside the guesthouse again. I took the hand of the beloved preacher’s wife and smiled warmly, silently assuring her that we so appreciate their care for us. Other workers and choir members joined us in the breezy balcony as we enjoyed the sumptuous lunch they lovingly prepared. We shared testimonies and stories of God’s love and mercy. We talked and laughed and rejoiced in the Lord, the staff meeting completely forgotten.

 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35)

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Journey with Jesus,

Comments

  1. I love sharing in your walk with the Lord. It’s very encouraging – thank you!

    • RinaPeru says:

      And I love walking with you, too, Laura, as you come and grace this place with your presence and warm words. Blessings to you!

  2. laura says:

    You are always such an inspiration, Rina. Thank you for your encouragement.

  3. Learning to let others love on us is an enriching lesson. I was raised Catholic, too – and now attend a charismatic christian church. St. Therese of Lisieux, her autobiography I read in the 5th grade taught me how to pray, how real God is – drew me so much closer to him. He takes those hungry for him on a journey, drawing us closer – like he did you!

    Thank you for sharing your story!

    • RinaPeru says:

      That’s true: we strive to love others but sometimes we don’t let others show their love to us. Like you, I also believe that that’s God’s greatest desire: to draw us closer to Him.

  4. Hazel Moon says:

    Walking with Jesus in a Spirit Filled group of believers does wonders for our insight into Jesus and His love. Thank you for your entry at “Tell Me a Story.” I have been off line due to computer failure and virus problems, but my husband gave me a different computer so I am back on line – just lost a bunch of stuff including my e-mail addresses..
    Please return Monday around 5:00PM PST when the new week will be open for your story at: http://letmetelluastory.blogspot.com/

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