Unity is a key ingredient in our success as a church when it comes to building the kingdom of God. When division rules, we stunt that work and create a culture of distrust and even dislike. Paul reminds the believers in Ephesus that they are to be unified. He tells them that means they must learn "humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love..." We must let go of our preconceived ideas and our deepest desires about church and listen to others as we seek the heart of God together as His body. We must be gentle and patient with each other admitting our sinfulness and flesh and walking closely with our God. When this happens, God begins to move among His people and lives are transformed both inside and outside the walls of the church building. When this happens, ministry begins to work according to God's plan. He reveals a multitude of leadership gifts that focus on teaching and training. These gifts are to be used to equip "the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ..." Leadership is not to rule a church; it is to prepare God's people for ministry. As this becomes the norm in our churches, we see change in people's lives as they learn to control their words and their anger while stepping away from those sins that stop them from complete surrender. In the end, we will learn to love one another, be tenderhearted, and ready to forgive those who have offended us.

Help me, Lord, to seek unity within the local body You have called me to. Help me to lead our leaders to prepare our people for ministry both inside and outside the walls of our church.