Thursday, May 17, 2012

Unity In Diversity by Martin Wiles

With cliffs reaching more than one thousand feet and breathtaking vistas in front and behind, Royal Gorge in Canon City, Colorado, is a tourist’s paradise.

We were on a 24 mile round trip train ride through the middle of the Gorge enjoying the peaceful repose of a ten day vacation. Hundreds of tourists joined us, standing side by side on the open cars with cell phones and cameras ready to snap pictures of each captivating sight as it appeared. But the atmosphere was not always so inviting.

Two railroads once competed for access through Royal Gorge, but it wasn’t wide enough to accommodate two sets of tracks. War broke out between the Denver Rio Grande and Santa Fe railroads along with a two year legal battle. Rifles and pistols soon replaced picks and shovels. Litigation in 1880 finally settled the battle when both parties signed the Treaty of Boston giving Denver Rio Grande access through the Gorge.

Knowing its temptation to divide over tradition and culture, Paul encouraged unity in the early church. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. (Ephesians 4:3)

Differences can divide or complement. Allowing them to divide damages the testimony of God’s church while unity in spite of our differences demonstrates God’s power to use his church to advance a gospel possessing a common denominator. The church is one body, indwelled by one Spirit, worshipping one Lord. God gifts all his children but allows us to use them differently according to our personalities and unique opportunities. Learn to appreciate those who are different from you while looking for common ground in advancing the story of God’s love. 

Prayer: God in heaven, enable our commonalities to overcome our differences so Your message of love can be heard by all.