THE COST OF UNITY:
The Jester's comments about how much it would "cost" us to get serious about unity are really on the mark. I confess that I had not really thought about the price to be paid for unity. I guess I sort of just thought that since Unity is so clearly a scriptural ideal - injunction - actually a mandate - that whatever we might perceive to be lost, sacrificed or forfeited in the process of achieving unity would be well worth the price. So, it did not even strike me as being "cost."
I am still convinced - more than ever really - that unity is so much more desirable than anything we might find it necessary to "pay" for unity. Let's see - what is it that we would need to sacrifice to pursue unity? Our peculiar (I don't mean "odd." I mean specific or distinctive) traditions, rituals, doctrines; our preferred methods, habits, calendars, vocabularies; our intricate systems of masquerade, pretense, deception; our insistence on our own superiority, rightness, purity.
Hmmmm. Not to put too fine a point on it, but if we are choosing to hold on to ANY of that instead of passionately seeking after "the full measure of the fullness of Christ" it sounds like idolatry to me.
I know that we cherish our denominational context because we have decided that "our" chosen brand of Christianity represents the purest, most correct interpretation of Scripture ever. If we do not convince ourselves of that how can we continue to attend and support our church?
Do we have the courage and conviction to face our beliefs and ask ourselves what it is we want to see happen with the Kingdom of God? Are we ready to forsake all that we have held dear for the sake of being a part of the unified Body of Christ?