So, I was going to amaze you with a story of mules. You know the one about one mule pulling 6000 pounds, but link him with another strong mule and they can pull, not just 12,000 pounds but 18,000 pounds?
Just before amazing you by comparing you to a mule, I decided to verify my facts on Internet, because everyone knows that Internet always tells the truth.
It seems my story about mules was probably about horses, Belgian horses. And it seems my story about Belgian horses pulling much more together was, “Bah! Humbug!” According to the Internet horsy experts, my mule story probably isn’t true, even if the mules were horses.
After that, a normal person would hang them up and say, “See you next week.” I’ve seldom been accused of being a normal person, though.
I have a theory and even though I have no mules to back it up. Here it is: In a relationship between two human beings, who work together in love and appreciation, their abilities aren’t simply added one to the other. They are multiplied.
Two Or Three Get It Done
Two Christians praying together find the power of their prayers multiplied. God visits them in a special way. “But, David,” you whimper, “I thought God was everywhere.” He is everywhere, but He’s not everywhere the same way.
He’s in the bar, the disco, the prison, the school, but He’s not there the way He is when at least two or three of His people get together.
Jesus talks about the authority of the Church acting when people sin and are unrepentant, but He adds something that is powerful for every situation.
“Believe me, whatever you forbid upon earth will be what is forbidden in Heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be what is permitted in Heaven.”
“And I tell you once more that if two of you on earth agree in asking for anything it will be granted to you by my Heavenly Father. For wherever two or three people come together in my name, I am there, right among you!” (Matthew 18:18-20, J.B. Phillips)
The people of God have power, authority and privilege when they enter God’s presence individually, but I believe that is multiplied when they pray together and act together. It’s not just an addition of forces but a multiplication of them! Be a part of a good church and be faithful!
It’s the same in a marriage. One of my favorite bits of advice to young marrieds is, “Save your battles for something that’s worth a battle.” Some many couples bicker constantly over things that don’t matter a hill of beans. But, constant conflict makes that hill into a mountain.
Just hush! You don’t gain anything by having the last word. It throws you apart.
Ah, but a couple that learns to pray together, that learns to talk together and points their family towards a common goal, that couple sees God’s blessing and power multiplied. You see the results in their kids, their finances, and their work for the Lord.
It shows up in happiness with each other.
If you’re constantly bickering, I have a tiny word of advice—QUIT IT RIGHT NOW!!!
In the Church, Too
People sometimes get out of step and that can negate the effectiveness of the Church. People say, “Oh, people in the world get along better than Christians.”
Really? Have you looked at Congress lately? That’s how the world gets along. Or the horrible divorce statistics? Yes, it does happen in the Church but according to reliable statistics, in couples who are praying, and going to Church together, it’s much less common than in the world.
There is a spiritual synergy in a couple that is serious about their faith.
They can pray more powerfully for their children, for their needs, for the needs of others. When two ask, it’s powerful.
So, how do you get to this point in church, in your marriage, at your job, in friendships?
- Be intentional. It’s surprising how few things in life happen accidentally. If we analyzed the situation, we would see that many bad things that happen are the result of things we did that finally bore fruit.
See what you want and work for it. Learn about the other person and work with them towards this goal so that your efforts will be multiplied.
- Have a goal bigger than yourself. If you got married, “Because he makes me happy,” you might be in for disappointment. Married couples need to verbalize their goals and decide how to reach them. Each couple needs common goals bigger than their individual interests.
- Really ask God for it. A goal worthy of the name needs to be big enough and attractive enough that you’ll not reach it without God’s help. It needs to benefit more people than just you and yours, if it’s a God-goal.
- Stop being selfish (which doesn’t mean you have to be a doormat, either). To come together with another or others, there must be compromise, listening, explaining, and respecting the other person even when you don’t agree. Don’t manipulate. And by the way, quit manipulating. Did I mention that we should quit manipulating others?
- Think about what would be good for the other person or people. Rugged individualists know what they want but often they will trample on whatever or whoever they must to get what they want. Somewhere, though, they will reach the limits of what they can do alone.
Christians working together in the love and the power of the Lord tap into God’s synergy and they can do whatever God says for them to do.
“You can’t shrink your way to greatness.” Seth Godin