“Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.”
It was a glorious day – a day made for an outdoor adventure!
So we called some friends who have recently taken up snowshoeing, and set off. But not before we had buckled up.
Our snowshoes, I mean.
Our friends had a new sort of bindings on their snowshoes – some sort of ratcheting system that was really slick. Mine have a series of straps and fasteners/releases which ensure my foot stays put. Both models are a far cry from the old style snowshoes we had back in the day.
We snapped and buckled and clipped, and we were off, chatting away happily in the sunshine of bindings and such.
We swapped stories of having a foot snagged by a sneaky tree root or fallen log. We chuckled over the ridiculousness of having a foot become buried at an odd angle in deep heavy snow. We regaled each other with feats of scaling steep snowbanks using the nifty grip spikes that clamp down as you tilt the ball of your foot.
Those bindings are phenomenal.
But they do have to be done up properly. You can’t expect to head out on a trek across snowy terrain if your dang snowshoes fall off every three minutes. Talk about a killjoy, stopping to reconnect a boot to its binding while everyone else learns patience the hard way.
There just may be a lesson here, as we speak of bindings and such.
You and I as followers of Jesus are given some interesting instructions here in the book of Ephesians. As members of the same team, we are to strap ourselves together. Cinch tight. Get out those bindings, with the series of ratchets clips and straps and so on, pull them snug, and prepare for an adventure.
But the buckles?
They aren’t leather, or plastic. Nor are they nylon straps, with cleverly contrived metal bracts.
These are a space age material, an invention that makes titanium look piddly and inefficient.
Imagine, if your marriage bound you together with peace. Your family, wrapped tightly and cinched in with peace. Your fellow congregants, buckled and ratcheted together with peace.
See, the baby who was born to be the Prince of Peace wants you and I to live so saturated with the stuff that we can use it as a building material, a spiritual glue of sorts, a means of erasing political, social, racial, economical, and cultural differences, to create a team. A team who, rather than lose their individuality, can use it to underscore the beauty of living side by side even when we disagree.
What a gift.
What a binding material.
Learn how to buckle together in peace with me?
Father, how we need this – to become so attached to others that we will stick together no matter what, support no matter what, go in the same direction no matter what. Bless us with a helping of this peace, that binds us together to enable us to pull as a team. Amen.