Tony Elder

Tony Elder

Recently my wife saw a flock of geese flying in the sky above her as she was driving down the road. In this case they were not positioned in their typical, intriguing V-formation. Some geese were flying at different angles or at varied heights. It was as if they were trying to get in line, but were still very much disjointed. My wife said it was so disorderly that she couldn’t even discern which goose was supposed to be the leader at the head of the formation.

Unfortunately, this is also a fairly accurate description of the Church, not just today but throughout much of history. We haven’t exactly stayed in tight formation. We’ve allowed everything from deep doctrinal differences to superficial personal preferences divide us. Instead of being a united powerful force impacting the world for Christ, we have too often splintered ourselves into factions which have isolated themselves or at least have reduced their effectiveness in carrying out the Lord’s mission for us.

We know that we are to be one body with Christ as the Head (Ephesians 1:22; I Corinthians 12:12-27). We know that Jesus prayed for us all to be one as He is one with His Father (John 17:20-21). Isn’t it time for us all to quit doing our own thing and fall in line behind our one true leader, Jesus Christ? Shouldn’t we all be willing to set aside our preferences, man-made traditions, and organizational agendas in order to be a Church whose spirit of unity can be a powerful witness to the world?

I’m not suggesting the formation of a new organization. I’m just encouraging true followers of Jesus, no matter what group you’re affiliated with, to join together in prayer for revival and reformation, to support one another as brothers and sisters in Christ, and to work together to accomplish the work of God’s kingdom here on earth. Let’s seek one another out and join together in spirit to better be the light in the darkness, the salt of the earth, and the holy priesthood God calls us to be. As opposition grows in society and in the religious community to those who are dedicated to following Jesus and upholding the truths of God’s Word, we’re going to need the fellowship and support of likeminded believers.

However, we should seek such unity in the Church not only for survival, but also in order to accomplish our mission. Do you remember the movie about a kid’s hockey team, “The Mighty Ducks”? If I recall correctly, when that disjointed group of players started uniting as a team, their secret weapon was a V-formation out on the ice. It would allow them to slice through the opposing team and score the goal.

Unity among believers will not only help us survive the attacks of those who consider us the enemy, but it will empower us to move forward and advance the cause of Christ in the world. It will help us to better fulfill that picture Jesus gave of His Church — not of a powerless religious organization, but of a powerful Spirit-led organism against which the gates of Hades would not prevail (Matthew 16:18). V-formation for the Church can lead to victory. As we humble ourselves before God, get ourselves and our ambitions out of the way, and submit ourselves to the lordship of Jesus and the truths of His Word, we can slice through enemy territory and achieve God’s goals for His people.

We know we need to get in line with our fellow believers behind Christ our Leader. Let’s pursue such unity in the Church.

The Rev. Tony W. Elder is pastor of Wesley Community Fellowship Church. He can be reached at 770-483-3405 or by email at revtelder@aol.com.

Editor

I have been editor of the Rockdale Citizen since 1996 and editor of the Newton Citizen since it began publication in 2004. I am also currently executive editor of the Clayton News Daily, Henry Daily Herald and Jackson Progress-Argus.