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Misunderstood Unity

February 23, 2014

I work in an organization which sends many short-term teams as well as develops working groups around projects.

I hear a repeated statement coming out of their meeting times.

“Give us unity….”

I prayed this with my teams for many, many years….until I realized what it meant.

Now, when I hear teams pray this, I cringe.

You have no idea what you are asking for.

Misunderstood unity believes the following:

“If we are unified, we will never fight.”
“Unity means we will agree and have similar views on the decision we face.”
“Unity is standing in a circle holding hands singing “Bind us Together.”

Wrong.

That view of commonality is not unity, it is cultic.

Group think is dangerous.

In Scripture, the most common analogy given for unity is the body, with many members working together. The members and their talents they bring are not the same, but the goal is.

If I had a dollar for every person who’s New Year’s Resolution was to read the Bible more, or to pray more, or to _____ more, I would be a wealthy man.

This key extends to all the disciplines in the Christian life, but let’s look at through the lens of reading our Bibles.

How many of us desperately want to read our Bible, but no matter what we try, it doesn’t seem to work?

We lack the motivation to read it, so we don’t. The tyranny of the urgent calls us to do other, more important things. As a result, the Word of God becomes a source of guilt in our lives.

Can you relate to those feelings?

If you say yes, you are in the majority and not the minority. What is the secret to developing such a necessary, but difficult habit?

Happy New Year!

This time of year is often used for setting goals. However, many endeavors fail before the end of the first month! Largely, this is because the goals we set are unobtainable.

As I considered 2012, I was struck by the number 12.

In the Bible, this often is a symbol for the church. You have twelve tribes, twelve apostles, and the book of Revelation is filled with this number. Heaven is described with 12 gates and 12 different jewels. From cover to cover, the Bible speaks of the people of God in terms of 12.

The season we have just left has the 12 days of Christmas. Why twelve? I’m not sure, but it is catchy.

In football, we have the 12th man that represents the influence the noise of the fans can have on a game at a stadium. Seattle has even retired this number in honor of the advantage the crowd gives them in their home games.