“For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace...”
~1 Corinthians 14:33a (KJV).
Without God we are chieftains of disorder and confusion. This is no better illustrated than in the original Corinthian context; the running of their ‘humble’ church services. Things easily ran awry as tongues and prophesy were two things of note that split the congregations. It’s no different for us; people seek another church if they see too much humanity and not enough God evident during services. And who could blame them?
Besides, any sense of disorganisation within church services fills those attending them with very little confidence in the leaders organising a meeting for praises to be collected and issued to God.
A Broader Application
We can safely assume God is a God of consensus regarding community and the harmoniousness of life together. We can even picture Jesus in the midst of a church squabble shaking his head quietly, his Spirit wishing to say, “Work together, people.”
Opportunities to Share
One of the downsides of the very opposite problem the Corinthians faced—the highly organised church—is there’s perhaps little or certainly less opportunity for congregants to share something that God has placed on their hearts, publically, before the throng. Our ‘orders of service’ are at times too well organised. There needs to be a balance struck between formality and felt community.
Hints at Ungodliness
Could it be that any and every derailed event that ought to have been more organised was vacant of God? Perhaps there are exceptions. It’s seems plain, however, that wherever God’s involved, consulted and listened to, that people would work together and for God’s true purposes.
It is easy, then, to make an extension here to the link between teamwork and godliness, for those who submit to a higher cause—which is the group interest (besides overtures to groupthink and the like)—are acting in the spirit of humility, for which the Spirit of God finds thoroughly commendable.
This almost always naturally leads to peaceful outcomes.
God of Peace
We all should know the outcome of virtue is peace.
And God authors not only peace, but virtue. We are to exemplify both. Every good thing leads to peace and Christians sensitive to God’s Spirit and leading will not miss opportunities to promote every action toward that end. Without just about every exception, peace is most often more important than lesser issues.
Peace is the mark of maturity; that one group of people can live in harmony with another—even to entire nations or cultures cohabiting in harmony—or that separate individuals can relegate their own needs for the collective need.
Peace is the communal imperative. God is not only our personal God, but as important, our communal God.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.