29 Apr Strongest Together
Read Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
Thought for the Day:Christians are strongest together!
Going into a new NBA season in October 2007, there were a lot of questions about the new “Big 3” which consisted of Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, and Kevin Garnett. Each player had previously attempted to carry his team to a championship on his own shoulders. Each player had also prioritized putting up eye-popping personal statistics. Many were concerned that the Celtics had put together a group of highly paid athletes who could never set aside their need for personal glory for the greater good of the team. However, something amazing happened that year: each one set aside his personal ego and numbers. Very quickly, the Big Three learned that while one star player can be stopped, a group of three working together is nearly unbeatable. And – three stars meant that the Celtics had three leaders who could each say ‘the buck stops here’ whenever they faced adversity. In the words of coach Doc Rivers, “The best players always have to carry the team bus. Now, we have three of them to share the load.”
Sharing the load and winning together is not a new concept. Thousands of years earlier in the Book of Ecclesiastes, the preacher emphasized the power of connection. In the Ancient World, an isolated traveler was an easy target for robbers. Their secret to staying safe was learning that there is strength in numbers. While “a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Imagine the image of a cord made up of three strands. Even if you cut one strand with a sharp pair of scissors, you would quickly find that the rope would hold. After all, the two other strands, still intact, will make up for the one which failed. What is amazing is that threefold cords tend to be made out of relatively thin material. The cord’s strength lies in its unity rather than the individual power of any single strand.
While we know that connection is important, many find themselves going through moments of feeling alone and isolated. Instead of facing our problems alone, we can learn to find strength through our relationships with other believers. While every one of us has experienced personal failures and disappointments, we know that none of us is asked to be a hero on our own. God wants us to learn the lesson of the threefold strand. There is power in connection and sharing the load with the Christians placed in our lives. Whether in person, by text, phone call, or through Zoom, anytime we struggle there are always others there to stand with us and support us no matter what we face.
Pastors Stan and David