unity through love, not compatibility

"Unity on my Terms" cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

“Unity on my Terms” cartoon by nakedpastor David Hayward

One thing I’ve learned, just from observing myself, observing my relationship with my wife Lisa, observing my relationship with my children, and observing my relationship with every other living creature… is that unity is not achieved through compatibility, but through love.

Love not only desires diversity, it requires it.

If we waited until we all believed the same thing, love would never happen.

Love starts now. Right here. With me. With you.

We love diversity and encourage it at The Lasting Supper. Feel different? Are you unique? Good! Join us!

Tomorrow I start “Sheep Week” with some new sheep cartoons. Stay tuned!

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4 Responses

  1. Ducatihero says:

    So you see there being a dichotomy between unity and compatibility with love and diversity being healthy bed fellows.

    Yeah the world would be a much better place if truth/justice/equality/love were had on my terms probably because I am different and unique. *wink*

  2. Caryn LeMur says:

    I remember encountering this style of reasoning at the Vineyard church we attended for a time.

    Every meeting and discussion was always on ‘their terms’. When I showed the pastor a verse or two in the Bible (to demonstrate that there were other and more biblical ways to do things), the pastor would give me the strangest look… and then say, “Wow… you sure know your Bible.”

    But… that church needed a strong anchor – a sense of certainty. The concept that there could be three or four reasonable anchors derived from the Bible was very difficult for them.

    And, that board and pastor needed ‘the power’ – that is, the thrill of being in charge, if you will, of being the board and CEO of their business. The idea that the Bible was in charge, and that we would always and forever be changing due to the Bible and the evolution of our city… well, they could not grasp the need for always changing.

    Like the blacksmiths of every village in 1890 to 1920, they have fought hard for all the people to keep a ‘horse in every back yard’. To think …. the world would evolve and render them obsolete…. but that is what happened. Transportation was and is always needed; but ‘horse-shoes’ are no longer a necessity.

    A necessity become a novelty. May the institutional church take notice soon.

  3. Yes, that’s good Caryn.

  4. Ducatihero says:

    Caryn,

    What you say has brought me comfort, thank you.

    I think the comfort has come from feeling I am not alone. At the Vineyard church I was at when one of the speakers asked what I did and I mentioned I was studying theology he said that he felt intimidated in my presence. I tried to reassure him not to be. The pastor was always preaching that what he was doing was “not just theology”. I think his intentions were good and I think what he meant was that this was not just “head stuff” but putting things into practice. However there was one time in a sermon when he said at the top of his voice “don’t go to bible college”. I couldn’t stand that and in front of the whole of the congregation during his sermon matched his energy with an out bust using the word “eaasy” as in “go easy” to which I saw him physically recoil. There was another time when another leader in the church came up to me aggressively and had an out and out argument in front of everyone about me being “corrective” with comments with him on facebook.

    It just so happened that three of us left at the same time and independently ended up in the same church elsewhere. I t was healing for the three of us to share our experiences free fro any concern of how we may be judged. I found out at that time that as soon as it was discovered I had been studying theology there had been gossip about me at the Vineyard.

    I’m just done reading “The Shack” for a second time and as a result I feel myself challenged to love the church even when it is a human institution that has departed from the biblical meaning of church. So yes this idea of strong anchors derived from the bible with applied theology being something I think they had difficulty welcoming and listening to, not unlike you talk of with your experience of the Vineyard.

    I hope me sharing this has helped you as much as your sharing has helped me :).