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My church has three high schools that we support in our area. Two of those three are bitter
rivals. Last year I had the opportunity to speak to the football team of one of these two rival
teams. I was told to make sure that I don’t wear the wrong color and cause an issue! So, I was
very careful to wear the proper shirt. Team rivalries are fun, and we accept that and even
expect that. It is all part of good competitive fun. They make for great memories and fun
antics at times. However, this dynamic is far different when it comes to churches.

We as churches, God’s people, are supposed to be on the same team. We are called to make
disciples and share the Good News. We have a common call and a synchronized mission. And
yet, I am amazed how often we build fences and insist on wearing only our colors! We fall prey
to territorialism and work out of jealousy and judgement so often.

Here is the danger. What if another church has something we need? What if another church is
better suited to meet the needs of one of “our” families? What if the other denomination has
something we need to implement in our church? Do we just reject it because it is too Baptist, or
too Pentecostal, or too whatever? Sadly, we often do exactly that.

The result is that we have a lot of well-meaning churches who are working hard but are limited
because they don’t want to be seen wearing the other team’s colors.

What would happen if we allowed God to tell us what needs to happen in our church rather than
holding hard to our traditional lines? I believe that there is good and bad in all man-made
institutions, but why do we insist on following that old saying of throwing the baby out with the

My hope is that we hear God together and let Him do what He wants to do in us and in our
churches. Let’s not limit God by being bigger fans of our team than we are of His Kingdom.