“Individual commitment to a group effort—that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilisation work.”
Our survival in community depends on people giving of themselves for others. Whilst we’re all apt at confusing life for a ‘thing’ that’s there to provide all we want and ‘deserve’ we only truly get these things via the opposite method. Surely we all know that and I’m just parroting what is—at least in theory—common knowledge.
But the practice of it is not. It’s not common practice to be committed personally and deeply to the group effort. But it should be.
People Against People
We should all regularly check ourselves for implicit bigotry... identifying those underlings of prejudice that lurk within our nature regarding certain sorts of people and ideologies. These things are killing us as a collective, or certainly any hope we have of true communal unity.
We cannot achieve God’s macro-will this way, for God surely wants the collusion of minds and hearts under one common ideal: that of love.
What is it that prevents us from loving people enough to want to do things for them, despite ourselves? How do we get to that place where their needs are made just as important as ours? This is a biblical principle we should all know that summarises the gospel approach to life in community—to the entire world (Matthew 7:12).
Greatness Just Around the Corner
Most people want to be involved in something great, at least at the deeper levels of their consciousness. The deeper heart knows we need to have something truly beyond us to really thrive in this life; this is a living purpose... something to lose ourselves to and in.
So, why do we so often settle for a lie—that third class existence where we slink back into our selfish comfort zones?
Well, for starters, it’s comfortable. It’s what we know. It’s where we’re safe. It becomes our default position where we ‘enjoy’ life, supposely.
But there’s also very little growth there, and instead of shifting sideways we generally find we’re travelling the wrong way.
Arresting the Slide
There is a daily opportunity before us. It’s to question the sincerity of our efforts toward the group cause. Far from beating ourselves up about it, however, we try just to add value in small ways... to a few a day.
No one’s expecting giant strides out of us to be the ‘team player’. We’re just to be cohesive, that’s all.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.