By the Rev. Lakeya Stewart
“Can’t we all just get along?” This is the famous quote by Rodney King that is often used when someone desires to see unity amongst a group of people. The phrase is meant to draw people together rather than to incite anger and frustration in others.
Peace and harmony exist when people unanimously agree to respect the differences of opinions and thoughts of others even if they disagree with the other person. It occurs when people are intentional about working together with people. One example of this is a person’s work environment which is composed of people from different backgrounds. It is not necessary to “be like” others on your job, but it is necessary that we actively work at being a good team player and promoting unity rather than division. What part do you play in the promotion of unity on your job or in your church?
Have you ever stubbed your big toe on the washing machine at your house? Was it possible for you to walk normally? The chances are that you have just responded “no!”
I remember during a summer in elementary school, preparing to travel from southern Maryland to Baltimore to get my hair braided. My sister and I were rushing and playing on the skateboard just before getting into the car when I slipped and my thumb slid across the cement. If the abrasion had been on the portion of my finger just below the nail, I believe I would have been okay. Instead, my deep cut was on the bend of my knuckle on the thumb—talk about painful. My hand was then unusable for the entire weekend because of this little thumb! My thumb was not cooperating with my hand. It was unable to act as a “team player” in this instance!
The Bible uses imagery of the “family of God” throughout scripture. The “body of Christ” or the “family of God” is depicted as a diverse group of believers with differing skills, talents, and abilities but all working together for the edifying of the church. 1 Corinthians 12:12 says that there are many members yet one body. When you walk into the sanctuary, who is it that greets you? (if you are greeted) In my church, the ushers are those who open the door for the worshippers to enter the sanctuary. I’ve noticed that ushers are often forgotten about and overlooked.
What would happen if the ushers decided to forsake their posts for a month? Who in your church would actually step up to hand out bulletins, welcome the worshippers, and greet members with a smile? I am certain that after a few weeks, people would find that the role of the ushers is vital to the healthy church.
Every believer has a role to play for the Kingdom of God. In the local church, there are many roles that must be fulfilled in order to have a properly functioning ministry. Small churches sometimes face difficulties fulfilling roles with different people. Sometimes people at these churches feel overwhelmed, overworked and underpaid. They often have many roles to fulfill… yet, the church members who choose not to function in any capacity at the church are the ones who complain the most about the same people being used often!
God desires that we commit to and do our best when it comes to completing tasks. Most assuredly, this is true for those working in the local church. Whatever we do for God and as servants to others, we should do with a willing heart. Each member of the body of Christ is essential. We all have a role to play and others are counting on us. On this week, I challenge you to consider the roles and parts that you play in your everyday life. Ask yourself these questions: Who is counting on me? Can I be counted on?
For questions or further correspondence concerning future topics or speaking engagements, please email at RevStewartSpeaks@outlook.com.
The Rev. Dr. Lakeya Stewart, M.Div., D.Min., ABD attended Berea College and the Lexington Theological Seminary in Kentucky and earned a double major B.A. degree in Sociology and in African & African American Studies as well as the Master of Divinity Degree. Rev. Stewart is currently writing a dissertation on Toxic Leadership and Spiritual Abuse through Regent University.