There is a peculiar kind of glory that comes to a man
who unifies and empowers genuine diversity for a common good.
In history, we celebrate stories of heroic leaders who take disconnected misfits and make them a strong army. If you are familiar with the Bible, you might think of David and his mighty men—a diverse group of malcontents who became champions under David’s command. If you are more familiar with popular movies, you might think of Remember the Titans, where Coach Herman Boone led a newly-integrated T.C. William high school to a state football championship.
Indeed, we love to hear stories of leaders who take natural-born opponents and unite them together for the same cause. And even more, in our ultra-divided world, we need to hear these stories. And thankfully, there are many such stories that can be told.
Recently, I came across such a story in Jon Knokey’s book, Theodore Roosevelt and the Making of American Leadership. In this fascinating book, Knokey tells the colorful tale of what happened when 1000 radically-different men from all over America were formed into a single fighting unit under the leadership genius of Colonel Roosevelt.
Here’s what he says. It’s long but entertaining and worth the read as it gives a fresh illustration of what we find in Ephesians 2—something I sought to bring out in yesterday’s sermon on Christ and his Church. Continue reading