Several years ago, I purchased a braided hibiscus tree. Actually, there are four plants braided together so that they appear as one solid tree. When I looked into how this was done, I was amazed at how the plants were trained to grow together. Now, after almost 10 years, the trunks of these four trees are so entwined that they look like they naturally fit together.

Too often, we have this idea that growing together happens naturally. Instead, it takes work and intentionality. While Christians are already united together in Christ (Eph. 4:1ff), it takes work to maintain and foster that growth together. The picture that Paul presents of the Church in Ephesians 2:11-22 is that of individuals being brought together, built up together to form a dwelling place by the Spirit. God is saving individuals and he is building us together. But how does this happen?

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