I value appropriate tension on my guitar strings; proper tuning is impossible without tension. However, I grow weary of relational and cultural tension. With the guitar, the tuning mechanism is pulling the strings against the bridge; the correct tension of the string is necessary for melody and harmony. With people, tension is the result of divergent ideas that pull against one another, often resulting in disharmony. Culturally, we have faced months of tension over racial issues, over Covid responses and over political matters. People are experiencing a genuine fatigue over all these things. Even guitar strings lose their “song” eventually. The tension that once brought ringing sounds produces string fatigue that brings dullness and difficulty with intonation. In Acts 21, Paul went to Jerusalem with high hopes for unity but he walked into a very tense situation. Politically, Jerusalem was a powder keg just waiting for a match. Even the church was struggling. The Jewish Gentile division was always a source of tension and this was especially true in the geographical center of Judaism and the birthplace of the church. There’s no guarantee or fire-proof plan to eliminate tension among believers but we’ll see that some of God’s people found a way to receive one another gladly and glorify God. I pray some of us will do the same.