FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE WAY FORWARD IN CHRIST
UNITY AND PEACE – 8
November 3, 2015
Today’s reading: Romans 12:5-16
There is much work to be done in the call to the New Evangelization. We as CFC-FFL have been called, raised and equipped to participate in this work. In fact, we are at the forefront of this work. We must be one in vision and mission. We must be united and at peace with one another. We have been given a great responsibility and we will be held accountable.
How can we maintain unity and peace?
First, we must realize that indeed God intends for us to be one, that “we, though many, are one body in Christ and individually parts of one another.” (v.5). This is a great challenge, but it ought to be a given. So each and everyone of us must strive to contribute to unity and peace.
Second, being called as the one body that is CFC-FFL, we must realize how much we need each other in order to be able to do the work. As we were baptized in the Spirit, each one was given a gift, which is to be used for ministry. “Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us exercise them” (v.6). With each one given a gift, the whole body has a wide variety of gifts, all intended to assist in the overall work. We are one body with “many parts, and all the parts do not have the same function” (v.4). There are prophets, ministers, teachers, exhorters, financial contributors, servant leaders, social workers (v.6b-8). If one does not exercise his given gift, then it is the overall work that suffers.
Third, and very importantly, we look to and work at our relationship with each other. How should we treat each other?
- We are to “love one another with mutual affection” (v.10a). We are brethren, friends and co-workers. We ought to be invested in each other. In fact, we are to “anticipate one another in showing honor.” (v.10b).
- We are to exercise humility in our dealings with each other, treating each other as brethren without favoritism. “Have the same regard for one another; do not be haughty but associate with the lowly; do not be wise in your own estimation.” (v.16).
- We are to identify with each other. We are to have deep empathy for the situation of our brethren. What happens to them happens to us. Thus, “rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” (v.15). This is a great impetus to unity and peace.
- We are never to look on our brethren as our enemy, for we only have one enemy, the evil one. Yes, there will be challenges and even conflicts. But our posture is not to exacerbate such difficulties. Rather, “bless those who persecute you, bless and do not curse them.” (v.14). Again, they are your brethren, your family, your community.
Fourth, we are to be zealous for the mission that has been given to us. “Do not grow slack in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.” (v.11). It is the Lord who calls us and sends us. It is His divine work that we do. How can we not give our all? Further, it is when we are slack on our work that we begin to turn against each other.
Finally, we always look to the Lord who is the One who called us and who is always there for us. There will be challenges, suffering and pain, but we are to “rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, persevere in prayer.” (v.12). Nothing should ever faze us. We are God’s people. We are God’s workers. We are God’s gifts to each other, and to the world.
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