Our oneness is our uniqueness

The word pride has a way of pervading the mental framework of humanity and percolating to its core with resultant ill and repulsive feelings. No one beams with pride when they are indicted for the felony of pride since this confirms false pride. Instead, it makes one try to swallow his pride. Pride prioritizes self against the common good. It privatizes what is for communal betterment. The Bible proscribes pride and prescribes selflessness as its prophylaxis.  I am here for a limited time, and I will not train my arsenals on that which has already been subjugated. This defeat was not wrought in an adrenaline-charged scrum. Rather, it was worked out in substitution style. I don’t mean one player was called and another recalled. Thus I will beat down my arsenals and weapons of mass destruction and use the resultant materials to build not a summer camp but a tower that endures beyond all seasons. Why would a novice in swordsmanship run wild wielding a sword? Let me drop this rigmarole and hit the nail on the head now.

Pride

My intention is not to talk about the pride that resides in our hearts. That one has already been taken care of; we are not a protectorate of Satan. We are saved and sovereign, liberated but not libertine, redeemed and regenerated, delivered but not demonized.

I sit in this public square to have a short discussion on the pride that resides out of our conurbations. This kind of pride will provide a tutorial that will likely change the way I transact my daily business. The pride consists of kings, queens, princes and princesses. The incredible maharaja is not as powerful as one princess from this Savannah family. The pride boasts of the largest cats in Africa. Lions have a brilliant social structure that ensures their survival in an environment that is nebulous. They hunt and stick together like cobbler’s glue.

My point is this: we have to remain united even in diversity or become disunited and destroyed. Our lack of belief in, and slackness in practising unity portrays the nihilistic tendencies that are deeply embedded in our hearts.

The lions in a pride are always there for each other. It is not outlandish to witness lions come to the rescue of each other. The National Geographic Channel ran a video clip that showed a female lion that had a serious injury on its lower lip. Peradventure this was caused by a gore from a cape buffalo or a bite from a hippopotamus. This injury spelt doom for the female lion.  Its kismet had been determined. Imminent death was inescapable. The good news is that respite was on the way. As the pride hunted (this is a preserve for the female lions), the unlucky ungulate was brought down. The healthy lions would immediately start to slice off chunks of meat and gobble down as fast as a paparazzi running after Nicole Kidman. In amazement, one of the lions used its paws and powerful teeth to roll the carcass backside down. It did this and held onto the carcass so that the injured lion could eat the innards. The seemingly moribund lion had a chance to enjoy the dinner just like the rest. It appears that these lions knew one of their own was unable to eat the muscular parts of the kill. It also appears that they considered it ‘comradeship’ to assist one of their kind.

What the Bible says

One of the strongest pillars that keep the horrible castle of disunity from crumbling is pride. Pride has the ability to forestall any progress towards the unity of purpose. It is a genie that drinks from our fire hydrant and leaves us unprepared for an inferno.

Every Christian is supposed to play the role of a catalytic converter. The amount of toxic fumes released into our atmosphere by uncivilized politicians and their sycophants is gradually reaching lethal levels. We can do this by starting with ourselves for any tangible change starts with self.

  1. Think Unity
  2. Speak Unity
  3. Practice Unity

The Holy Spirit is here to help us. With prayer and submission, we can be the agents of unity in a world that is unashamedly divided and polarized along racial, ethnic, political and religious lines.

The following are scriptures to help us get deeper into this topic.

“How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on Aaron’s beard, down upon the collar of his robes. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the LORD bestows his blessing, even life for evermore.”

Psalm 133:1-3

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me”

John 17:20-21

“Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion,  then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”

Philippians 2:1-4

“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.”

Acts 2:1

“They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.”

Acts 1:14

“So that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Romans 15:6

“Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.”

1 Peter 3:8

Further studies can be found within the pages of the Bible. My favourite one is 1 Corinthians 13. Unity of purpose – noble purpose – has been preached in the Old Testament and in the New Testament by Jesus and the Apostles. The Early Church Fathers followed suit.

“Unity and victory are synonymous”

Samora Machel

All Scripture quotations are taken from the New International Version (NIV) unless otherwise noted.

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