Study: Where do I see signs of unity in my life? How can I build upon them?
Pray: Where do I see signs of disunity in my life? Call upon the Lord for grace and strength.
Serve: How can I help others grow closer together? How can I foster unity?
“The community of believers was of one heart and mind…” (Acts 4:32)
I marvel at the transformation of the disciples. Before the resurrection of Jesus they were filled with fear, paralyzed by their own weakness and doubt; after the resurrection they are changed, as evidenced in even the basic ways they lived and worked together.
One heart and mind!
Unity can be challenging in even the best circumstances: we see things differently, hold our own unique values and principles, as well as personal tastes and interests. Working together is tough, yet it is a common sign of holiness – the practical proof that we are doing our part to build the Lord’s kingdom here on earth.
What supports unity? Jesus Christ! Unity with Christ provides the grace for unity with Christ’s brothers and sisters; this clear sign of faith draws others to the Good News and fosters our community with one another. Take a look at a few of the patterns that emerge in today’s readings:
- 1st Reading – sharing according to need
- Psalm – giving thanks to the Lord
- 2nd Reading – love of God by keeping his commandments
- Gospel – Christ’s peace that overcomes doubt
Another way to say it: Sharing, Gratitude, Love, Peace – which find their source in Jesus and flow through us to the those we meet. I would suggest that the disciples used these building blocks to form the first elements of the Church, working together in unity with the grace of Christ to proclaim the Good News.
This work continues today. We all know firsthand the effects of discord – where lives are broken and fragmented by selfishness, fear, hate, and a hardness of heart – yet we believe in something greater…Christ is triumphant! Our response can mirror the disciples:
- We acknowledge the obstacles in our lives
- We turn to Jesus Christ and call upon his grace
- We allow the Lord to work through us to unite with one another
May we bring these powerful blessings of the resurrection to our world today:
- Sharing the gifts God has given us
- Grateful for the blessings we have received from on high
- Loving others as Christ loves us
- Bringing the Lord’s peace to those before us
One heart and mind!
Resurrection, Szymon Czechowicz; 1758, oil on canvas, 525 x 392 pixels, Olesko Castle, Ukraine.