As Women of the Way, we seek Unity in the Body as we focus on Who unites us rather than What divides us.
We are One Body with many parts. We are One Church with many voices.
Join me in welcoming Rev. Vanessa Holmon as she shares her voice on Unity.
Unity is a hot topic!
WOW! A discussion about unity is definitely a current hot topic and much needed.
When we look around, we see the chasm of our disconnectedness, both physically and
emotionally, growing greater and greater. How do we stand unified when adversity, circumstances, and situations coalesce to tear us apart?
What does unity in the body of Christ look like?
Does it mean we each have to dress alike, walk alike, speak alike, read the same version of the Bible, listen to the same music and never deviate from those “norms?”
Is that the definition of Christian unity?
Thank God, the answer to the question is a resounding NO!
We are One Body with Many Parts!
Vast Diversity for Singular Glory!
In 1st Corinthians 12, Paul covers this topic. He tells us that, yes, we are one in the body of Christ but the body is made up of many members with diverse gifts. God, in His infinite wisdom, created each of us from our mother’s womb with a unique purpose and destiny. Just as God created each snowflake with its own one-of-a-kind pattern, he also endowed each person with their own unique DNA and fingerprints. He then blessed us with different talents and gifts that are to be used in our service to Him. Not everyone is called to be a soloist in the choir or a preacher in the pulpit; consequently, there is also a need for someone to serve in administration and someone to be the parking lot attendant, or usher.
I like the way Rev. Dimetra Barrios sums it up: “Bringing together our vast diversities for the singular glory of God.”
When the “Sistahs” Work Together
One of my favorite stories in the Bible is found in the Old Testament in Numbers 27. In that chapter, we find the story of Zelophehad’s daughters. Zelophehad had passed away and didn’t have any sons to inherit, only girls who legally could not inherit. So, what’s a girl to do in the face of being left in dire circumstances? Well, you have to take drastic steps to rectify the situation. And so, the daughters of Zelophehad’s united together, probably putting aside sibling rivalry and squabbling, and went into action.
These five sisters (in my mind, I call them “sistahs”) were brave, courageous, and stepped out on faith. Yes, these sisters were united by blood but together they faced a patriarchal society, economic distress, and misogyny. They weren’t even allowed to enter the Tabernacle, they had to stand by the door to make their request to Moses and the priest, Eleazar. They asked to inherit their father’s estate—something unheard of at the time. And God blessed them and told Moses to change the law in Israel and grant these sisters, standing together in unity, their request.
Standing Together in Unity
Get More done Together
When we stand together in unity with one mind and one heart, miracles can and will happen. The Bible tells us in Ecclesiastes 4:12 in the New Living Translation, “A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”
So, the question is why is being unified so hard?
Why do we allow our differences to become so magnified that they become obstacles, hurdles, and stumbling blocks on our Christian journey? After all, aren’t our differences good things?
Dr. Jabez Burns states: “Sin in its chief essential element is discord. It divides, separates, confuses, and distresses. How do we stand unified when it seems as if our differences are far greater that our commonality?
Unity is found in the Trinity!
Our best example of unity in the Bible is the Holy Trinity (even though the word is not
found in the Bible). We serve a triune God—God, the Father; Jesus, the only begotten son; and the Holy Spirit.
In the very beginning, we see all three present. Genesis 1:1-2, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”
Then in John 1:1, and 14, “1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.’ John 1:14 “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”
Unity IS Possible!
Is unity possible with all of our differences magnified?
Yes, the answer can be found in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We can’t do it on our own, and we have to work on it daily.
As Laura Mayer told us, we have to surrender all to Him. In other words, let go and let God.
We have to remember that although Jesus loved ME enough to die on that old rugged cross over two thousand years ago; He also love OTHERS enough to die for them also. We are all part of the blood-bought family of God.
Prayer for Unity
Dear Heavenly Father,
We thank You for Your goodness, mercy, and grace surrounding us daily. We praise you
for who You are and all that You have done in our lives. Lord, help us to see others through
your eyes realizing we all are created in your image. May your sweet Holy Spirit, residing in each of us, enable us to love our neighbors as ourselves. Help us to love each other in spite of our differences. May your love unite us and bind us together.
In the mighty name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.
Do you want to share your WoW Voice on Unity in the Body of Christ?
Email Amy at firstname.lastname@example.org
Rev. Holmon is an ordained itinerant deacon in the AME Church. Currently, she is serving as the proud Pastor of both St. John AME Church in Mulberry, TN and Suggs Chapel AME Church in Dellrose, TN.
She is a graduate of Motlow State Community College and Athens State University.
She was employed for 29 years with the Federal Government, holding a variety of positions before her retirement as a senior program analyst from the Dept of Defense.
In addition, Rev. Holmon serves as secretary of her district’s Women in Ministry;
secretary for the Fayetteville-Pulaski District; in weekly jail ministry at Lincoln County Jail, as a teacher of a weekly community bible study at St. Paul AME Church, and as a
coordinator for women’s conferences. She has spoken at a variety of conferences, churches, and banquets.
In August 2014, Rev. Holmon underwent an unexpected personal health crisis that
changed her life. But throughout the whole process, she has come to realized that “His Grace is Sufficient.”