At church on Sunday, I got to the service late because I was talking to folks in the lobby. By the time I got to my usual seat, it was taken. I decided to sit on the far right side of the auditorium, which gave me a unique vantage point in our worship service. As I watched our church family singing in worship, I began to reflect on what God is doing.
One of the things that immediately caught my attention was the amazing amount of diversity matched by the amazing unity created by the Holy Spirit of God. It's funny that diversity in and of itself is only as good as the unity we have in the midst of it. Diversity is rightly to be celebrated and pursued, but only if unity is part of the pursuit and celebration.
Here's what I saw...
Hands up and hands down. There are lots of people who express their worship with hands raised. Others not so much. The beauty is both are engaged in genuine God-honoring worship.
Young and old. At the given moment a 16-year-old girl was the one on stage singing and no less than 10 feet from me was a woman easily in her 70s, fully engaged in worship. Age is not an issue in this family!
Cool and not so cool. I looked around and couldn't help but notice a number of people in skinny jeans, v-necks and boots as well as lots of folks in slacks, button-downs and sports coats. All equally connecting with God.
Elephants and Donkeys. I even saw people who represent a variety of political viewpoints. I happen to know the political views of a few very vocal people and very diverse views were represented. This reminds me that God doesn't belong to a particular party. I guess the real political question that matters is, "Are we in God's "party" and under His authority?" The Bible clearly explains, all authority is His and the government rests on His shoulders!
Black, white and brown. The racial diversity is growing at Highpoint, and it's very encouraging. Not just black and white diversity; we also see Asian Americans, Latin Americans and those from Middle Eastern decent. I even saw one or two rednecks! All created and loved by God.
Sinners and...sinners. I saw lots of people who have major sin issues like, drugs, alcoholism, sexual sins and worst of all... the legalistic and self-righteous folks. God, in His grace, is actively working to convict and restore people ravaged by all kinds of sin (including the awful sin of self-righteousness).
I'm not sure why, but in this season of life God continues to bring up the issue of unity in His church. God is SERIOUS about unity in HIS family. We all need to acknowledge the ways we judge the outward appearance, harbor bitterness, carry a critical spirit and think of ourselves as "better than" someone else. May we all confess the ways we contribute toward disunity. Join with me today to commit to being a force for unity in HIS Church. You may not come to Highpoint Church (link), but whatever church you attend needs warriors who battle constantly for the unity in His Church. I can say with total confidence that "unity and diversity" is the will of God.
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