Unity is one of the most effective ways to achieve progress in anything. It is one of the most powerful forces on the planet, which explains why it’s so difficult to obtain, much less sustain.
Unity is oneness, yet it exponentially multiplies the magnitude of any effort. Too little is written about it, perhaps because it is so elusive in our culture of individuality and independence.
The power of unity has long been recognized and has been harnessed for both good and evil. In the movie Gladiator, Maximus Decimus Meridius and his fellow gladiators are in the Roman Coliseum preparing for a bloody battle when Maximus exhorts the others to band together as one. “Whatever comes out of these gates, we’ve got a better chance of survival if we work together. If we stay together we survive. Come together. Lock your Shields, stay as one!” What a powerful demonstration of unity!
Many people have no idea what unity even looks like. It’s sad that it often takes tragedy to provoke people to drop their differences and work together.
Think about how our nation responded after 911. In the midst of tremendous loss, there was more love, cooperation and patriotism than we’d seen in years. When Louisiana was decimated by Hurricane Katrina, people from all over the country gave of their time, money and talents to help. This behavior is seen to some degree whenever disaster strikes.
I am experiencing unprecedented unity in my own community, Panama City, FL. In a mere three hours, the city was decimated by Hurricane Michael. As a native Floridian, I have been through many hurricanes. Never have I seen this level of destruction. At first, we were all in shock from the unforgettable experience of 150 mph winds beating on us for hours. The landscape was completely changed when we came out of our homes before dusk. We surveyed our own damage and then checked on our neighbors. We cried when we realized that a vast majority of residents have lost their homes, businesses, jobs, churches, and way of life. But then hope rises and we get up and start the process of re-building. We can only do it with a huge team. One friend commented, “experiencing the goodness of people and strength of this community is more exhilarating than the sadness of the devastation“. That’s what unity does – it makes you strong.
E plurubus unum is a latin phrase and motto of the United States seen on coins and currency that means “out of many, one”. The original meaning implied that out of many states evolved one strong nation. The underlying message is that there is strength in unity. If we don’t intentionally cultivate it, unity will become a relic.
Unity is a prerequisite to community transformation. A great leader activates the spirit of unity and impossible tasks become possible.
5 Ways to Create Unity in Your Community
1. Articulate a compelling vision that rallies the team. 100 instruments tuned to the same tuning fork will all be in tune with one another. Be the tuning fork for your team with a clearly articulated vision.
2. Be sure your team shares core values. Keep those values front and center by talking about them repeatedly and demonstrating them in every decision you make.
3. Don’t be offended. Taking offense is the first step into disunity. It puts up walls and stunts communication. It was statesman Winston Churchill who said, “When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you.”
4. Keep your eyes on the big picture. Whether it’s in a marriage, a business, a non-profit organization, a church, or a movement, we can all be reminded, “Get over yourself, it’s not about you”. An African proverb says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”
5. Unity is relationship oriented. Achievement is great and necessary in order for a business to function, but when achievement becomes a higher value than relationship, unity suffers.
The Power of Unity
It’s easy to give mental assent to an idea without taking action. I challenge you to actively pursue unity in your community this month – right where you are. Since I have a vested interest in the community of Panama City, Florida and we are recovering from the most devastating storm to ever hit the Florida Panhandle, I invite you to unite with us in rebuilding. You can donate through this trusted regional church Here => https://destinyworship.securegive.com/SG/WebOnline/Home/Index?WO=destinyworship
We will rise – stronger than ever as we experience the power of pulling together.