by Robert C. Frank
For the past few years we have had an opportunity to see how hateful and disconnected life can become when love and teamwork are lacking. Love and teamwork are closely related, but not the same. Love makes teamwork possible while teamwork makes love functional.
Love can be defined as a deep feeling of affection or attachment. Love brings people together. When asked which commandment was the greatest, Jesus said, “Love God with all your heart, soul and mind and your neighbor as yourself.” The word love is mentioned many times in the Bible, so it is well understood in Christian circles.
While not using the word “teamwork,” the Apostle Paul provided an excellent example of it when he called the followers of Jesus the Body of Christ in 1 Cor. 12 in the Bible. He was anticipating that they would work together in a manner as well coordinated as the parts of the human body. In our world today the characteristics of a team are the following: (1) Each member has a different skill, a different task, and a different view of the team effort; (2) The activities of the team members, however, must be coordinated so they support and don’t interfere with each other; (3) All members of the team must work toward the same goal. These characteristics are why teamwork is so important
Despite periods of dysfunctionality such as that recently experienced, civilization on earth seems to be gradually moving toward a point when love and teamwork will prevail. Someday in the years ahead, when the mission of Christianity is fully understood and followed, civilization on earth will become the peaceful Body of Christ. Thoughts to ponder at Christmas. Perhaps theologian Richard Rohr's new book The Universal Christ will help.