The flock of birds caught my attention. It was intriguing how there were so many, yet they flew in perfect unison. Together, they formed a roundish shape that floated across the sky and changed directions in a fraction of a second. They did this multiple times, yet I never once saw any of the birds get caught off guard and fly in a different direction when their peers suddenly went a different way. God created them with an innate sense of how to work together and a keen ability to communicate well.
When you read through Scripture, you will find is that God wants His followers to function as one. Jesus prayed for it [i] and Paul taught about it [ii]. Different analogies and examples are used, but the bottom line is the same—He created us to move and work together in accomplishing His purposes. We may be unique individuals with our own gifts, roles and functions, but He has called us to be one. Like the flock of birds, we are to move in a common direction, even though that direction might change from time to time.
How is it possible to reach this level of oneness? Most importantly, fix your eyes on Jesus, the One who unites us all in Himself. Allow God’s Spirit fill you and teach you how to work together with other believers. He can give you the innate sense that will keep you moving in the same direction as the rest of His flock and will protect you from flying off in a different direction. Also, cultivate a deep, Christ-like love for your brothers and sisters in Christ, keeping the lines of communication open. This will keep you devoted and committed to the flock, and your relationships healthy. Last, but definitely not least, let God fill you with His grace for others. You will need this when one of your fellow believers does something that irritates you and lets you down.
It may seem difficult to cultivate this kind of unity and it might seem easier to fly off in your own direction. The flock is not perfect and you might think there is an easier way to live. However, stay with the flock; God has a work for us to do...together. As you fix your eyes on Jesus, allow the Holy Spirit to fill you, love your fellow Christians, and flow in God’s grace, you may be one “bird” God uses to get us where we need to be.
“But above all these things put on love,
which is the bond of perfection.
And let the peace of God rule in your hearts,
to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.”
Colossians 3:14, 15
[i] John 17:11
[ii] 1 Corinthians 12