I’m lucky enough to be part of and feel welcome at two different churches. I have been involved in Kill of the Grange Church of Ireland for over 10 years (including time spent going to youth club), and have been hanging around Urban Junction for probably around 6 years I think.
Both places are great. Both places have different styles and have different positives and negatives. At either of them I can look around and see great people, great friends and people who do great work for Jesus.
But what happens when people disagree in the church? Today’s E100 is full of that. There are a good few instances of debates and meetings to discuss issues (v.2, v.6, v.22, v.25, v.39).
We can see the church working as a team, working through issues together. The most important part of this is that they do it for the best interests of spreading the gospel (verse 28 shows that they prayed and sought the Holy Spirit’s will).
When there are disputes between members of a church it is very easy to take things personally. We even see this in the news – we’ve heard that the pope possibly retired due to a split in the church.
From what I gather Paul and Barnabas were pretty good mates. But they had a disagreement. And it must have been a pretty bad one as they eventually decided to part ways. They did not let their split affect their faith or their work in spreading the gospel though – they carried on with their travels and continued their work.
It’s inevitable that we as Christians will bicker and argue about certain things, but the key is to always seek the Holy Spirit and to not let disputes stop our work with Jesus.