The answer, as it turned out, was “redeemed.”
As I thought about the word, three memories came to mind. I remember the frenzy in the 1950s to redeem S&H green stamps for value of certain goods at something like twenty stamps per penny – you needed lots of stamps to get anything of even minimal value.
And I worked in the recycling business when laws were passed – still in effect in certain states today – for redeeming aluminum cans and glass bottles for five cents apiece.
The currency for redemption in both of those cases is good old cash money.
That made me ask what the currency of unity is.
Big Daddy Weave says it is redemption in Jesus, surely one of the central strands of our common DNA!
“Seems like all I could see was the struggle; haunted by ghosts that lived in my past.
Bound up in shackles of all my failures; wondering how long is this gonna last
Then You look at this prisoner and say to me; ‘Son, stop fighting a fight that's already been won’
“All my life I have been called unworthy; named by the voice of my shame and regret
But when I hear You whisper, ‘Child lift up your head’
I remember oh God, You're not done with me yet
“I am redeemed; you set me free
So I'll shake off theses heavy chains; and wipe away every stain
Now I'm not who I used to be. I am redeemed! I am redeemed!”
As he accepted the K-Love Fan Awards top prize for this song, Big Daddy said, “It is not how I see you. And it is not how you see yourself. It is how HE sees you!”
Twenty S&H Green Stamps? Redeemed! For a penny.
One aluminum Coke can? Redeemed! For a nickel.
One very lost sinner like me? Redeemed! Priceless.
The currency of unity is redemption from a very lost cause – all of us as family.