Garry spoke from Eph 4:1-3 last night, talking about unity, working together and harmony. God wants us to be united, but when we think about the church, we realise we’re not building a brick building (where all the bricks are identifcal); we are more like hewn stones. We are all different, not uniform at all, and yet we are being built together by a master builder.
Unity involves us:
being completely humble, not being interested in our self-importance but understanding how God sees us and how He sees others. Humility is the first step towards unity.
Unity also involves gentleness, a non-imperious attitude where we don’t lord it over anyone, where we again see people as God sees them, not ‘ranking’ them according to their social worth, physical strength or mental ability.
It also involves patience (‘the capacity for restraint in the face of obnoxious acts or attitudes’, putting up with, being long-suffering.)
It involves bearing with each other, even though it causes personal difficulty.
It involves making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. We need to be diligent and zealous in this; the word conveys the idea of hard graft or labour!
Unity isn’t the same as unanimity, but it does involve harmony. In musical harmony, different notes are played, but the overall sound is richer and more textured than if we simply played or sang in unison. This is what happens when people who are so very different work together: we produce a sound that is richer and reaches more people. We truly are better together!