Summary: God’s plain and simple precepts for successful and satisfying teamwork through constructive relationships.
Part 1 of 5 in the series, Together We Make a Difference, The Advantages of Teamwork in My Life!
We’re beginning a new series today on teamwork. Learning how and why we need to work harmoniously together with others is a vital part of satisfying and long-lasting relationships. Our lives are better when we work together. Marriage, friendship, on the job, and certainly in the church, learning how to cooperate with others is a tremendous step up to our health and happiness.
We’re going to begin today with a great spiritual motivation for teamwork – God’s desire for us to work together.
God has this intense longing for us to experience the blessings of teamwork. He knows that we won’t lead lives of fulfillment just working on our own and simply working for ourselves. Each one of us is made for something bigger. God made us for teamwork.
A lot of people never realize the value of this concept – and that’s sad - because that means they miss out on a great privilege of life.
We’re going to see that by following God’s instructions each one of us CAN be team players.
We get these specific and practical instructions from an Old Testament prophet named Micah. But first let me give you some background information on Micah.
Several things set Micah apart as a prophet.
First, a lot of the prophets preached to either the Northern Kingdom of Samaria, or to the Southern Kingdom of Judah. Micah preached to both. This is significant since there was a longtime feud between the kingdoms. It shows that Micah knew how to rise above petty human conflicts. It shows that he knew how to work together, even with people who were divisive.
Second, Micah actually prophesied that Bethlehem would be the town in which Jesus would be born. That is a tremendous indication of his accuracy as God’s spokesman. Bethlehem was a tiny hamlet outside of Jerusalem, yet 700 years before Christ was born, Micah precisely predicted that Jesus would be born there! That tells us that we can trust the things this guy says on behalf of God!
Third, Micah was known for being practical, down-to-earth. He talked about faith in a way that let his listeners and readers know what God expects on a day-to-day basis rather than on a Sunday-to-Sunday basis. The message of the Book of Micah is one that calls us to repent of our sins and to live our lives honorably. It calls us to be good people and to live out our faith, not only in how we worship God but also in how we treat other people.
For instance, one of the things Micah talks about is the guilt of God’s people in forsaking God and he warns of God’s loving discipline if the people don’t repent. One of the big areas that God’s people had messed up was in personal and social morality. They weren’t treating each other properly and, as always, this displeased God. God wants us to treat one another in an excellent manner. He wants us to work together as a team.
Personal and social morality remain tough issues. Every one of us struggles with right attitudes and actions in our own selves. We also struggle with getting past the wrong attitudes and actions of others.
What is the solution? How can I overcome my natural human tendency to be so independent that I don’t play well with others? The solution is God’s solution. He has answers and one of Micah’s statements from God is so personal and so powerful that I’ve chosen it for the hub of our series TOGETHER WE MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
In Micah 6:8 (NLT) …the prophet says this, “…the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.”
Three simple precepts: 1 – do what is right; 2 – love mercy; and 3 – walk humbly with God.
Simple precepts to understand, but not always simple to implement!
For sake of modern application I want to paraphrase these precepts with THREE PRECEPTS FOR EXPERIENCING AND ENJOYING TEAMWORK.
1. Play by the rules in your relationships.
“…the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to DO WHAT IS RIGHT, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.”
Doesn’t matter whether it’s your marriage or your job or a ministry team here at Pathway Church, “the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what He requires of you – do what is right…”
Play by the rules in your relationships.
You and I are not going to be successful in teamwork if we don’t follow God’s rules. You and I cannot disregard God’s rules and expect to have healthy relationships. But that’s all too often what we do – we ignore God.