James Stytle shared a beautiful message of reconciliation.  Beginning with words from Doctrine & Covenants 161:3c,

c. Be patient with one another, for creating sacred community is arduous and even painful. But it is to loving community such as this that each is called. Be courageous and visionary, believing in the power of just a few vibrant witnesses to transform the world. Be assured that love will overcome the voices of fear, division, and deceit.

James reminded us that living in community is not easy and requires patience.  God’s goal for creation, including His children is shalom.  James shared methods in dispute resolution from his experience as an attorney.  He walked the congregation through Matthew 18:15-20, which is Jesus teaching his method of dispute resolution.

Matthew 18:15-20
New International Version (NIV)

15 “If your brother or sister[a] sins,[b] go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’[c] 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

18 “Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be[d] bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be[e] loosed in heaven.

19 “Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”


  1. Matthew 18:15 The Greek word for brother or sister (adelphos) refers here to a fellow disciple, whether man or woman; also in verses 21 and 35.
  2. Matthew 18:15 Some manuscripts sins against you
  3. Matthew 18:16 Deut. 19:15
  4. Matthew 18:18 Or will have been
  5. Matthew 18:18 Or will have been

New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Our challenge is to take Jesus’ instruction to heart.
You can view James’ message within the next week by going to https://www.pscp.tv/w/1kvKpjEXdmPJE.


God of Shalom – We come before You with thanksgiving for Your unending love for us and desire for all of creation to experience peace.  We are grateful for Christ’s example of how we should be reconciled with one another.  May our eyes be opened to instances where we have harmed or hurt one another, whether intentionally or unintentionally.  Give us courage to set aside our pride and be willing to apologize for our transgressions.  May our hearts be open to those coming to us seeking forgiveness.  Help us to show the same grace that You offer us.  May our community be a living example of shalom is our prayer.  In the name of Jesus.  Amen.

Speaking / Message
Photo of James Stytle
James Stytle
Public Information and Outreach Community of Christ» Contributor

husband, father, stepfather, grandfather, son, brother, uncle, lawyer, Freemason, soldier, Esperantist, magician, past master of Montgomery Lodge #50, past president of Montgomery County Bar Association, Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee (Chairman 2006-2009 / Vice-chairman 2009-2012)

Photo of Valerie Brennan
Valerie Brennan
Pastor Community of Christ • Indianapolis

Val is the Lead pastor at Community of Christ Indianapolis.  She holds the priesthood office of High Priest. When she isn’t here, she is a principal at Somerset and provides wealth management services.

The High Priests represent Christ primarily as ministers especially through the proclamation and promotion of of ministry through the congregation, mission center, and communities.  They lead the sacramental ministries, promote community, promote justice and peace; all while creating nurturing partnerships.