Togetherness is what we lack. There is power in a group, large or small, which is together in purpose. When we know who we are, what we care about, and what we share as common goals, being together is encouraging, electrifying, healing.
But we lack togetherness. We are driven to be individuals, to be skeptical of the leadership of others, to find fault rather than common cause. We exist in isolated clusters, now alone or now with a select few friends or family. We only rarely open ourselves up to a group experience, to being part of a larger something, a collective enthusiasm.
It seems to me that if we knew better who we are, what to be arduous about, how to come together for common joys and loves, we would be better for it. We could possibly capture that quality mentioned repeatedly in Acts: being in one accord.
The things that I suspect bring us together and fill us with intense longing as a bunch of Messianic Jews and philo-Semitic Christians would include:
- Praying and singing the words of the prophets and psalmists via the Siddur and also newer expressions.
- Connecting the whole story from the Patriarchs to the world to come in our learning.
- The physical ceremonies of Jewish tradition which make tangible our beliefs.
- The lifecycle events of people in our communities and the Jewish traditions to mark them.
- The rhythm of the calendar and sanctifying time with observance.
- The extraordinary life and liberating message of Yeshua, understood more deeply through holistic reading of the Bible.
- The literal belief in the corporeal and definite age to come and all its wonders.
These are the things that brought us together. These are the things that satisfy. These are the reasons some left old denominations in Christianity and Judaism. No tradition which omits these things can compel us.
So when we come together and focus on these things in our communal worship, we can leave behind the cynicism, the rugged individualism, the discord that fragments our togetherness. When we come together focused on these things, we can be, as it was in Acts, in one accord.