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Differences

Briefing: I had a Captain once tell me, “If I had a hundred of you I could rule the world.” My ego swelled and I thought, I must be a really good cop! Later I learned that he had told that to every officer on my shift. I no longer felt as arrogant.

Dispatch (Assignment): Read Romans 12:3-8.

On the Street: Paul tells us we are part of the body, each with different assignments and gifts. A lot of times we think others must be just like us. They must meet our standard, they must think like us, vote like us, try to look like us, talk like us and the list goes on. As much as this world teaches tolerance and diversity, it gets angry when some don’t agree with their beliefs. That is hypocritical.

The body of Christ thrives on the diversity of its members. The list Paul gives us includes everything from leading to serving. We are to love people of every tribe, nation and tongue. The only thing we cannot compromise on is Jesus Christ. He is the only way to the Father.

I want to point out two analogies. One is a football team and the other is the band. For the high school kids, this is about as diverse as it gets.

On the football team, the lineman is just as important as the quarterback. Some arrogantly do not believe this because of what the world teaches us. It says if they were equal the lineman would get just as much credit as the quarterback. The world has it all wrong. All the parts are equally important. If the players don’t play as a team they lose.

Let’s look at the band. There are many instruments that play different notes and parts. If they all play their part and are on the same page of music it will sound good. If they don’t play together and start doing their own thing the sound is not pleasing. The word harmony means the combination of different musical notes played or sung at the same time to produce a pleasing sound.

The best shift I ever worked on was a midnight shift. We had about eight officers on shift. A couple of guys loved to hunt drunk drivers, another couple of officers loved working the Intoxilizer instrument and a few other officers liked to come in behind and take care of passengers and tow vehicles. We were a well oiled machine. If, like my old Captain said, “If I had a hundred of you”, then there would be no one to do the other tasks of running the Intoxilizer, searching and towing vehicles, booking in prisoners and so on. The system would get bogged down if all the different parts did not work together. We understood the diversity of our shift was our greatest asset.

It’s all about team work. In your workplace you might have Christian officers who are good at meeting the needs of the poorer members of your community. You might have officers who are good at leading worship. If you have Christian officers who do not seem to contribute to producing good fruit then maybe they need help finding their spiritual gift. We all have at least one spiritual gift.

Investigational Resources: 1 Corinthians 12:4-5, 1 Peter 4:10, and on the internet, search “Spiritual gift test”.

Officer Safety Principle: I have seen too many small groups break up because not everyone was experiencing the same season and not everyone wanted to just do Bible studies. Like any team, find ways to work together and don’t get discouraged and stop meeting. Recognize that Christian officers in your agency may have different areas of gifting.

from The Book of Romans Through the Eyes of a Cop
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
Click here to check out the entire Through the Eyes of a Cop series!

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