There was a time, not long ago, when churches tried to minister to people as a single mass. No longer is this possible. Yet, Scripture makes it clear that unity must exist within a local flock of believers if we are to reach the maximum potential as a church who promotes the love of Christ to an unloving and lost world.
Historically, four to five generations often exist together, interlaced in a particular moment of time: young, adult, mature, and senior. Not only are there four to five generations existing together at Mobberly, and the resulting implication means that there are four to five sets of value systems that are being advanced, each with its perceived needs and perspective. When the church understands each generation’s values and how they were molded by events that defined that group of people, we can only then become the most effective in the use of our limited resources as we fulfill the Great Commission.
In addition to generational differences there are also cultural and sub-cultural differences which seem to complicate matters even more. For instance: new believers, soon-to-be believers, lost people, mature believers, carnal Christians, etc…In fact, recently, our youth staff shared with me how one young girl in our student ministry accepted Christ as Savior one week. She returned the next week with a friend who needed Jesus and that young girl trusted in Christ the following Sunday. I am so thankful that our student ministry experiences God’s salvation week after week. At the same time, I am equally excited about an upcoming Senior Adult Revival April 22-24 as so many of our mature adults will be bringing their unsaved friends and neighbors to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ and perhaps be saved before it is too late. Our mission is to lead ALL people into a life-changing, ever-growing relationship with Jesus Christ.
Another aspect of our own present diversity is related to the linkage one has with the East Texas community at-large. For example, some are moving into this area with no prior exposure nor connection to East Texas; some are reconnecting with local roots; still others view everything through the eyes of a local mindset which has never been altered by living in another locale.
Needless to say, the impact of multi-layered diversity is becoming a more significant issue within our local flock. Even as Jesus prayed for unity, so we must pray for and pursue unity. We must be in prayer for God to continue reaching more people who don’t know Him as well as God using our own people to serve hand-in-hand with one another in ministry. It is the Spirit of God alone Who can bring “Unity through Diversity.”