I am pretty sure most, if not all of us, have a pet peeve or two. A couple for me are the people who I have seen dump their vehicle’s ash trays in parking lots or intersections; and then, the people who leave dirty baby diapers in parking lots are in a class by themselves. Lord have mercy, I feel sorry for the baby because of the environment they must try to grow. Lord God, help those babies. Amen. That is a legitimate prayer. After all , what can we pray about? If you don’t know, look at Philippians 4:6. The answer is everything!
But another pet peeve of mine, are the people, and their mind-sets, that seldom, if ever, use (and mean) the word “We.” “I this … I that,” never “we.”
I guess it was my family and friends, it was growing up in the church, it was team sports … that taught me the importance of “we.” “We” can get a lot more done and be more successful at it, than “I.”
What does the Bible say about “we?” Here is a sampling:
Numbers 11:10-17 (CEB). Moses is exhausted physically, emotionally, and spiritually trying to lead it all. Moses is angry, tired, and overwhelmed; and he complains to God. You know it is OK to do that, right? The LORD gives Moses a plan (verses 16-17): “The LORD said to Moses, ‘Gather before me seventy men from Israel’s elders, whom you know as elders and officers of the people. Take them to the meeting tent, and let them stand there with you. Then, I’ll descend and speak with you there. I’ll take some of the spirit that is on you and place it on them. Then they will carry the burden of the people with you so that you won’t bear it alone.'” Wonder if it was hard for Moses to let some of it go? Probably. But, it was for the betterment of all (the Children of Israel, Moses, Moses’ family, and the elders).
Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (CEB), I’ve mentioned these verses in a sermon or two, “Two are better than one because they have a good return for their hard work. If either shall fall, one can pick up the other. How miserable are those who fall and don’t have a companion to help them up.”
Acts 13:1-3 (CEB)
Barnabas and Saul sent to minister
13 The church at Antioch included prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon (nicknamed Niger), Lucius from Cyrene, Manaen (a childhood friend of Herod the ruler), and Saul. 2 As they were worshipping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Appoint Barnabas and Saul to the work I have called them to undertake.” 3 After they fasted and prayed, they laid their hands on these two and sent them off.
1 Corinthians 3:6-9 (CEB)
6 I planted, Apollos watered, but God made it grow. 7 Because of this, neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but the only one who is anything is God who makes it grow. 8 The one who plants and the one who waters work together, but each one will receive their own reward for their own labor. 9 We are God’s coworkers, and you are God’s field, God’s building.
1 Corinthians 12:12-30 (CEB)
12 Christ is just like the human body—a body is a unit and has many parts; and all the parts of the body are one body, even though there are many. 13 We were all baptized by one Spirit into one body, whether Jew or Greek, or slave or free, and we all were given one Spirit to drink.14 Certainly the body isn’t one part but many. 15 If the foot says, “I’m not part of the body because I’m not a hand,” does that mean it’s not part of the body? 16 If the ear says, “I’m not part of the body because I’m not an eye,” does that mean it’s not part of the body? 17 If the whole body were an eye, what would happen to the hearing? And if the whole body were an ear, what would happen to the sense of smell? 18 But as it is, God has placed each one of the parts in the body just like he wanted.19 If all were one and the same body part, what would happen to the body? 20 But as it is, there are many parts but one body. 21 So the eye can’t say to the hand, “I don’t need you,” or in turn, the head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.” 22 Instead, the parts of the body that people think are the weakest are the most necessary. 23 The parts of the body that we think are less honorable are the ones we honor the most. The private parts of our body that aren’t presentable are the ones that are given the most dignity. 24 The parts of our body that are presentable don’t need this. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the part with less honor 25 so that there won’t be division in the body and so the parts might have mutual concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it; if one part gets the glory, all the parts celebrate with it. 27 You are the body of Christ and parts of each other.28 In the church, God has appointed first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, the ability to help others, leadership skills, different kinds of tongues. 29 All aren’t apostles, are they? All aren’t prophets, are they? All aren’t teachers, are they? All don’t perform miracles, do they? 30 All don’t have gifts of healing, do they? All don’t speak in different tongues, do they? All don’t interpret, do they?
We’re always needing “we’s!” (e.g. Operation Goody Bag, SOUL FOOD, children, youth, Audio/Visual, choir, and the list goes on (like the beat). PLEASE visit with me or one of our lay leaders about opportunities to grow in your being and making disciples by being a “we.”
A last thought.
I was looking through one of my mother’s old Bibles and found a note my daddy wrote to me Thanksgiving 2005. My dad, like his father and all my paternal uncles (and now me), had what has been diagnosed as general tremors (“the shakes”). The “men folk’s” shakes were so bad, that as they got older, they needed two hands to hold a glass of water and they still spilled it pretty bad. Dad joked as he aged and his tremors worsened, that he drew his signature left-handed, because he could not write right-handed any more. Dad’s note looks like what some would call, “chicken-scratch.” But to me, it is more precious than any original historic document, “Dickie, I LOVE YOU VERY MUCH. LOVE DAD.” NOW … do not wait a second … but right now … let someone know you love them. Call, text, etc. Just do it! It will make both of you feel better. I promise.