24 Then he sent his brothers away, and as they were leaving he said to them, “Don’t quarrel on the way!”NIV

“Don’t quarrel on the way!”

This seems to be a knowing comment from Joseph. He was well aware of what his brothers were like (or, what they used to be like). Perhaps he was afraid that on the way home they might descend into recriminations, and start blaming one another for what had happened. No doubt his admonition would have quite an influence on them. They were now very much in awe of this man!

Of course people differ and will have differences of opinion. Life would be dull if we were all the same. We need to learn to respect these differences and be able to listen to one another. We could learn so much – even from people with whom we disagree – if we only had the courtesy to give them an ear. Sadly, in the church, we often dig in behind entrenched views, and become rude to others who see things differently. Frankly, it’s a terrible witness, and the world is often scandalised by our behaviour. Meanwhile, we hide in our ‘silos’, and from the apparent safety of our ‘echo chambers’ we lob grenades at one another.

But it is possible to disagree without being disagreeable. May God help us in our weaknesses.Our unity, and our witness to a watching world, are at stake.