Several weeks ago, I was prompted by the Holy Spirit to reconnect with someone from my past. This was not one of those things I was quick to embrace. Something took place many years ago that affected this relationship, and I was in the dark about it for a long time. Communication ceased, and I did not know why for several years. Then the truth came out. So many questions were answered in that moment, but I was all over the map emotionally. What the offense is does not matter, and I was going to do what most people do and accept the relationship as irreconcilable.
But God sees things differently. After nearly a decade of no communication, we reconnected on social media. Several weeks went by as I prayed about what to do next. Finally, the Holy Spirit led me to send a message. Through a few messages, forgiveness was extended and communication resumed. I had the first phone call this evening, and it felt great to reconnect. There was no discussion of the offense, but there was a lot of catching up and focusing on some positive things that have transpired. God still does beautiful things.
As I reflect on this, I think about what Paul talks about when he mentions the ministry of reconciliation in 2 Corinthians 5:18-19. He says, “Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.” Christ has done the work of reconciliation, but He has also given us the ministry of reconciliation. Allow me to expound on this a minute.
He has given us the ministry of reconciling lost sinners to the Father. People will not know of salvation in Christ unless someone shares the message. God chooses to use the mouths of those who have been changed and forgiven in Christ. I’m glad I can have a part in helping people be reconciled to the Father through repentance and faith.
On a more practical level, we see reconciliation play out in earthly relationships. So many right now are separated from each other because of various differences. Christians can’t get along due to doctrinal differences and preferences. People fall out with each other due to various types of offenses. God gives all kinds of commands on how we can restore these relationships, but we allow pride to get in the way.
Some may tune out on this one, but that’s okay. Christians should be leading the charge in racial reconciliation. How can we do that? We should be showing the world how we can love people of a different ethnic group. We should be leading the way in how we love those with different religious and even political views. A few more may have even checked out after the last sentence. Jesus prayed in John 17 that believers would be one, yet I hear many preach division and hate. I would rather side with Jesus on this one.
Reconciliation in our relationship with God plays out in our relationship with others. When Jesus was asked about the greatest commandment, He said it was two-fold: love God, love people. If you and I really love God, we will really love people. ALL people! Republican people. Democrat people. Asian people. Hispanic people. African-American people. Caucasian people. Mean people. Nice people. You get it by now.
All I know is I’m glad God kept chasing me down until I was reconciled to Him in Christ. I would be hopeless without Him. Because I have experienced reconciliation, God help me to minister reconciliation and model it.