Swallowing hard, the young fugitive pounded on the rough, wooden door. He hoped his master’s wife would answer and welcome him as she always did. Under the circumstances, the last person young Onesimus wanted to see was Philemon, his master. Months before, he ran away to pursue freedom. His quest led him to the Apostle Paul, who told him how Christ could set him free forever. He accepted Christ’s offer and became a Christian. A changed man, Onesimus was eager to prove himself. Still, he was fearful. Will Philemon understand, or will I be beaten for my offense? Can the barrier between us ever be lifted? He was about to find out.

Many barriers separate people: race, social status, gender, language, and personality. Before men, Philemon was superior to Onesimus. Yet both stood equal before God. This transformed their relationship from that of a master and slave to that of brothers. Christ tore the walls down. Maybe someone has wronged you and you feel you can’t forgive. Tear the walls down. Do you feel inferior to your boss? Tear the walls down. Is there a barrier between you and a friend because of differences in your personalities? Tear the walls down.

If we share a relationship with Christ, we stand equal. You must allow Christ to tear down the walls of division and replace them with His unifying spirit. Do it today.

If we focus on our differences, our focus is on each other. If we focus with unity, our focus is on God. — Unknown Author

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.