‘I am because we are’ is an African philosophical view of life which simply means an individual’s identity and existence is intertwined or connected to the larger community. ‘I am’ is about me as an individual and ‘we are’ refers to the community. In the Shona language of Zimbabwe we would say ‘Munhu, munhu pavanhu’ and in the Ndebele language of Zimbabwe we would say ‘Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu’. Human interconnectedness is unavoidable in terms of UNHUISM/UBUNTUISM (i.e. what makes us cultured humans). From an African point of view, your identity as an individual is not exclusive but inclusive in that there is mutual interdependence of individuals in the community. You do not make values (UNHU/UBUNTU) but they are given by the community. Every individual is accountable to the community over their personal behaviour. Could it be that this African world view resonates so well with our Christian values? I am of the opinion that Christian conduct and behaviour is not only between an individual and God but also between an individual Christian and the Christian community he/she belongs. While there are hierarchies and levels of honour we give to some individuals in the Christian community, this does not make them immune from accountability. The reason why we have a lot of moral laxity and moral indiscretions in high echelons of Church leadership is because some individuals have entrenched their power to a point where they are not accountable to anyone including God. The moment there are individuals who declare immunity to communal scrutiny, such individuals are throwing away or erasing that which defines us as a community. My advice to fellow believers in general and those in leadership in particular is to develop ACCOUNTABILITY CIRCLES within our ranks and file. This will help to ensure accountability at every level. It is dangerous and suicidal to be a Lone Ranger in the Christian Community. A CHRISTIAN IS A CHRISTIAN AMONG CHRISTIANS. I AM BECAUSE WE ARE. THIS IS THE UNAVOIDABLE REALITY OF BELONGING.
THE UNAVOIDABLE REALITY