This week I have been thinking about Unity. Actually I started thinking about division, and how our country, and the world, seem to be divided more and more. It doesn’t seem to matter the issue, but there is always one, and it doesn’t seem to matter the opinion, there’s always someone willing to fight about it and contradict it. But none of that fighting and anger leads anywhere except to division. So today I thought I would talk instead, about Unity.
We are all unique individuals. We have our own thoughts, formed from our own experiences, with our own perspectives on things. But, that doesn’t mean we can’t be united on things, even if it is on a basic level. I think most people can agree that they feel like they are important enough to be treated with respect. If we all can agree on that, we should all then be able to agree on the fact that each other person we come in contact with should also be treated with respect. We are all human beings, no one person is better than the other in the whole grand scheme of things.
This week I was looking at, and discussing with several people, how things like masks, vaccinations, religion, natural disaster, politics, race, and wages have divided our country. We can all have differing opinions on each one of these subjects, that’s ok. What’s not ok is when we start judging, belittling, or humiliating people based upon these disagreements. It is my opinion, that most of these things are superficial, at best, anyway. When we start to look at those around us as real people, we start to see needs, places we can help, ways we can strengthen, then we start to see people. And when we start to understand and really listen to someone else, and why they think the way they do, we can really see what they see and who they really are. That doesn’t mean that we will agree with everything they think, we don’t have to change our opinions just because we see why someone thinks the way they do, but we can respect people when we know where they’re coming from.
I am grateful for the many people I get to meet through my Church, my business, and my community. There is diversity in all places. That diversity is beautiful. Each person comes from a different background, each person has had wonderful, hard, heartbreaking, exciting, unique experiences that have influenced the way they view the world. So if everyone is so different, how do we become united? We have a purpose, a shared reason to be united. Again, a basic reason is that every person is a human being. That is a point of unity. We see people unite in the face of adversity. A natural disaster, a catastrophic event in an area, or simply in an individual’s life all bring people together. Happy things can bring people together, a common goal or interest will bring many diverse people together united in a common purpose. Freedom has, in the past unified our nation. Love of country and it’s potential can unite us if we all look to the same goal. We don’t have to be the same to desire the same thing, and often, the answer to how to achieve the goal will not come from one side or the other, often the best solutions come when both sides work together, and when that happens, usually the answer is neither sides opinion, but rather a third option that works better than either, but would never have been possible without a willingness to set aside our differences and work together toward that common goal.
So this week, I would encourage you to get to know someone else. Talk to them about their life and really try to understand. Look for an opportunity to help or serve someone in some way. It doesn’t have to be big, but it can be if need arises. Share what you have with someone else, let a car out in front of you when they are trying to get into traffic, instead of instantly getting defensive, ask questions to understand, without judgement. I will be striving to do this as well this week. I would love to hear what you learn!