Fairy Tail is filled with wizards, exaggerated characters and the worst bouts of motion sickness I’ve ever seen, but one aspect of the show I really noticed was the theme of unity. In Fiore, the wizards are split up into guilds that take on jobs. These guilds become strong, tight knit groups that support one another through their lives and hold together with an untouchable unity.
It really made me think about how I need to be treating other Christians. For me, this lesson on unity has been a looong one that God has been teaching and re-teaching over the years. I’m a pretty opinionated person and those opinions have always tended to be pretty rigid. That trait can be good in some situations, but not so much in a situation that requires cooperation, like a church.
The members of Fairy Tail, which is the name of the main guild in the story, have a sort of unconditional acceptance for each other not shaken by circumstances. Yes, they disagree and argue…a lot, but that does nothing to shake the core of their unity. Offenses and differences in opinion or style, the end of the day, are eclipsed by their inclusion in the guild. It’s awesome to see wildly different characters with dramatically different personalities and points of view accept and hang out with each other.
Even major offenses are set aside for the sake of that unity. When certain members of Fairy Tail, led by Laxus, decide to attack the guild in an attempt at a takeover, even then restraint is shown for that unity. When Erza is fighting Evergreen, she restrains from harming her and even offers her nickname of “Titania” that Evergreen was after because she is a member of the guild.
Your personal character aside, you are a fellow member of Fairy Tail. If you wish to call yourself Titania, then do so. I don’t know who gave me that name anyway. If you cease this nonsense and return everyone to normal, I pledge not to hurt you.
Even after the master decides to expel Laxus, which his opposed by the majority of the guild, he is sent off with the understanding that they are still there for him.
A similar unity is meant to exist within the church. The small disagreements and offenses, and even big ones, are meant to be put aside for the sake of the bigger picture.
“I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” Ephesians 4:1-6
Another instance is the guild’s willingness to bear the main character, Lucy’s, problems with no resentment whatsoever. Lucy is a runaway debutante with a cruel father who decides to hire a group to attack the guild until Lucy decides to come home resulting ultimately in the guild hall’s destruction and multiple injuries. The members of Fairy Tail endure the attacks of the guild and defend Lucy with all they have with no resentment against her. They don’t blame her and won’t allow her to bear the burden of her father’s attack alone despite her constant requests for them to let her take care of the situation. While she wallows in guilt in the aftermath of the enemy guild’s defeat, Makarov, the master of the guild, instead tells her to let go of her guilt.
Although it doesn’t hold true for every bit of happiness or sadness we still share things to some extent. That’s what it means to be a guild. One person’s happiness is everyone’s happiness, one person’s anger is everyone’s anger, and one person’s tears are everyone’s tears. There is no need to be guilt-ridden.
It made me think about my role in the church. My first thought tends to be about my own needs, but I really need to be thinking more about the other members of the church. What are they going through? What do they need? Do they have a reason to celebrate? Do they have a reason to cry? We are supposed to be a support to each other.
“But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it, that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.” 1 Corinthians 12:26-27
Not only that, but I need to release my pride and fear of becoming a burden and let other members help me. Too many times, I put on that fake, happy mask instead of really sharing with other Christians. The church is supposed to be a place and group where a person can be refreshed and encourage others in continuing through the day-to-day challenges of Christianity. I need to encourage and allow others to encourage me, because that allows us both to grow spiritually.
Pursuing this kind of unity that goes beyond the petty things that make people butt heads is what can make a church strong. In my church, there are many different people. One woman in particular comes to mind when I think of this subject.
I’m personally a pretty career-oriented person. I’m single, I love my job and the way my life is and I really don’t even know if I’ll ever get married. The person I’m thinking of is a stay-at-home mom type to the extreme. She doesn’t really agree with a woman working after she gets married and has said some domestically inclined statements that have made me want to run screaming from her house. But, if I had focused on that difference between us, I would have missed out on knowing a woman with one of the most loving, hospitable personalities I’ve ever seen. Who is always happy to see you, interested in your life and is raising four girls that continue that spirit of hospitality and are a huge blessing to the church.
So, if the fiery, passionate Natsu and cool, icy Gray can get along, I think the rest of us can look past each other’s differences.