We know agreement is a key to any kind of successful partnership, whether it’s in business, a marriage, or a creative partnership. Unity is a powerful thing that can weather any storm. When troubles destroy a relationship, be it a marriage or a business or what have you, it’s not the troubles that actually destroyed it. It was the lack of agreement. The circumstances just exposed the area of disunity.
The Strength of Human Agreement
Here’s a radical statement, but it’s true. Human agreement is even strong enough to thwart the plans of God. Now just give me a minute here, and I’ll prove it. It’s one of in the craziest stories in the Bible. It’s in Genesis 11, the Tower of Babel.
The backstory is God, when he created people, gave us the charge to, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the whole earth and subdue it.” (Genesis 1:28) God’s plan was for humanity to scatter itself over the whole face of the earth.
But we had a better idea in Genesis 11:4: “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower reaching to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the earth.” They had agreement. They had unity. Done deal.
Now this is the crazy part. In Genesis 11:6, even God admits their human agreement was stronger than his plan: “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing will be impossible for them.” Translation: “I’d better do something here.”
And he did. God intervened. Basically, he cheated. Those of us who know God chuckle at this, because we know he so does this, all the time. He came down and confused the languages. No communication, no agreement, problem solved. Look at Genesis 11:8: “So the Lord scattered them from there over all the earth.” God’s plan wins after all.
3 Questions that Lead to Agreement
Now this is a negative example of the power of agreement and unity. Just imagine how strong agreement is when it’s actually for something God is doing. Imagine how powerful agreement can be if, along with agreeing with each other, we’re also in agreement with God! Obstacles, get out of the way, you’re about to be road-kill!
So why is agreement so hard? How often has this conversation happened:
Husband (or business partner or wife): “Don’t you see the logic of this decision? A implies B implies C, botta bing, botta boom, and there you go!”
Wife (or other business partner or husband): “Well, I guess it does make sense…”
Husband (or first business partner or wife): “Great! We’re in agreement! Off we go!”
And it results in disaster. The wife (or business partner #2) was never in agreement with the decision to begin with. They feel bullied and steam-rolled over. Meanwhile, the husband (or business partner #1) is flabbergasted and shocked, because he was sure they were in agreement. He went out of his way to talk about it with the other person before implementing the decision!
The problem is, while they were in logical agreement, they were not in agreement. The thing many people don’t realize is this: There are 3 parts to agreement.
(1) Logical Agreement.
“Do you THINK this is the right thing to do?”
In other words, you both agree on the logic. Unfortunately, many people stop right there thinking they’re in agreement with the other person, but they aren’t yet. Yes, you do need to have logical agreement, but if that’s all you’re going on, it’s a lose-lose and you’re headed for a crash. One gets steam-rolled and the other is shocked to find himself (or herself) in the middle of a huge disagreement over something he (or she) thought they both agreed on.
(2) Emotional Agreement.
“Is this what you WANT to do?”
Even if the other person sees your logic, if it’s not what they want to do, you’re not in agreement yet. If it’s not what both of you want, then maybe there’s some piece of logic you missed. We can twist logic to arrive at almost any foregone conclusion. God often speaks through that nagging feeling that we just don’t want to do a thing, but we can’t put our finger on why.
(3) Spiritual Agreement.
“Do you have a PEACE in your spirit that this is what God wants you to do?”
You both truly have a sense that this really is God. Yes, you know this is what God wants you to do. It passes the peace test. “Do you have a peace about this decision?” Both people need to have an uncoerced “yes” to be in agreement.
If you both answer “yes” to all of these 3 questions, then you’re in agreement and you can move forward. If not, time to go back and pray more, separately and together, over the decision, asking the Lord for agreement. God often gives each spouse (or partner in a business) a piece. So often, working out the decision together with the other person leads to a better solution than either would’ve come up with on their own.
Now this assumes both parties are healthy, seeking connection in their marriage or partnership, rather than seeking a safe-distance. Sometimes fear and wounding prevents agreement, and you’ve got to go the way God’s leading you anyway. But I wouldn’t recommend that without specifically hearing from the Lord. Pursue agreement for a God-defined season first.
So what do you think?
Did you know God wants to agree with you? He’s dying (literally, Jesus did) to have partnership with you. Will you partner with him and seek agreement with him for your life? Found out how with Dave’s free ebook “Hearing God and What’s Next: 12 Ways to Hear God, 3 Things to Do about It, and 6 Ways to Know You’re Not Crazy.”