Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.
On Easter Sunday in SA, COVIDSAFE restrictions were eased for the first time since March 2020, allowing worshipping communities to gather together at 75-100% capacity. How beautiful were the delights and joy expressed by the gathered community where I worshipped! It reinforced that when we focus on ‘personal faith’ only, we miss the significance of God’s call to the ‘gathered faithful’, in all our unique and diverse expressions. Together in community, we grow in God’ s love beyond what each of us alone will ever know or understand. In God, we find harmony. Jesus ministered to a diverse gathering of disciples and diverse gathered communities. John 20: 19-31 narrates his appearance to the gathered community after Resurrection. We clearly hear God’s call to us all to work towards harmony, unity and togetherness. Acts recalls the greater ministry we offer when we work together, sharing resources and expressing God’s missional focus in unity. God’s family in harmony blends our diversity of expression into a song of peace. One of the key rationales with moving from SA Council of Churches to Churches Together, lies in the name indicating the active ministry to which we know God calls us, in all our unique and diverse ways. Together in unity – one heart and soul.
Prayer of Togetherness
Together, Holy One, we turn to you.
Together, Loving One, we sing our faith with harmony.
Together, Listening One, we raise to you our praise and worship.
For together, as your people
we know so much more than we can understand alone.
Open our ears to your calling of being faithful people together.
Strengthen our resolve to share our resources.
Help us learn from the generosity of the early Followers of the Way in Acts.
Draw our focus so we see and work together for all, ‘as any have need’.
For we know of your love,
and share in your grace,
and understand the wealth that is alive in our heart and soul
that comes with belonging to your faith-filled family.
As Easter people, we walk forwards
Blessed by the breath of your Spirit,
Guided by the Word of Christ
Called to be your family
Together in unity – one heart and soul.
Psalm 133: 1 (GNT)
How wonderful it is, how pleasant, for God’s people to live together in harmony!
© Rev Anne Hewitt 07/04/2021
this reflection & prayer may be shared as long as the original writer is credited.