Vereint (fair·i̱nt)- adj. United
United, what a simple yet complex idea; working together towards one goal, even when there is differences in ideas, process, and action. Being united is not a concept foreign to the body of believers (1 Cor. 12:12-14), scripture is laced with examples and teachings of working together. However, the idea is often lost in execution, it's all too easy to get caught up in having things done "our way."
The other weekend, I got to witness a beautiful example of many being united for one. BerlinUnited, a German organization, held a two day event specifically for the purpose of bringing believers from different walks together to pray, worship, and serve. In this event, appropriately called Vereint, over 20 churches in Berlin got together to split up into different Kingdom Teams and go serve in the city. From sharing a meal with a homeless person to passing out roses in a nursing home to praying with strangers, people of all generations came together to serve God. Afterwards everyone gathered together to share stories and worship together. Many people shared about how God impacted their own heart through the different activities and others shared how conversations they had with people in the city lead to people committing their lives to Christ! It was so encouraging to hear what God did through so many willing servants.
Then an amazing message was shared, about not letting this just be a once a year thing, but making this an everyday way of life. The speaker shared about how challenging it is to do things that others find strange; it can result in being made fun of or becoming an outcast, but it's what God has called us to do. The speaker referenced the story of Noah, and compared the point being made to Noah's life and what He was asked to do. He put his faith in God, even when it was difficult, even when he didn't want to do what God was asking. It meant that his neighbors made fun of him and thought he was crazy, but he still did it. He was asked to build an ark, we're just asked to love others and share our faith. This is something we can all do in our everyday life. Sometimes that means sitting with the kid eating alone at lunch or sticking up for someone who is being bullied; it means making friends with outcasts or sharing a meal with someone you don't necessarily agree with. Simply put, it means loving our neighbors. It was an uncomplicated yet powerful message, and the best part... it was from a 16 year old girl! She got up on stage and preached the word and absolutely killed it! As a teenage girl, she so clearly comprehended and explained the gospel message-- following Jesus means living a transformed life, and it's not always easy, but it is simple. After hearing this young woman share such a powerful message, I'm pumped to see what all God has in store for the future of Berlin.
"I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment." 1 Cor. 1:10