What a fun mini-series surrounding community. I pray its brevity on Sunday does not translate into brevity surrounding our commitment to hold the significance and importance of community in our lives. I trust that we will hold the sacred space of community close and give honoring attention to the life Christ lived out loud exemplifying life one to another in everything he did.
I trust that we will accept the invitation to a life lived out loud in the 72/500. We are a body. A body does not function well if we do not give proper attention to it. The arm cannot say to the shoulder it does not need it, or the eye to the ears I do not need you.
Over the years I have spent some decent amount of time in casts due to broken arms, legs, back, and so on. (yes my life was full of jumping first and on the way down trying to figure it out). One thing I can attest to is how much more the rest of my body had to work to make up for the parts that were immobilized. I remember being on crutches when my leg was broken. My body was used to being able to walk or run to places. Little things like stepping off a curb, getting in a car, playing with my friends became a chore. My whole body had to adjust and compensate for what my leg could not do. I remember callouses on my hands from gripping the bar on my crutches, I remember my shoulders getting sore as they now carried the weight of my body, I can remember the calf muscle on my free leg sore as it could no longer walk but swing my hips and then bouncing with my tip toes. I can remember how exhausting it was to go play with my friends, trying to keep up with them proved to be impossible. The life I was used to; the life that I was designed to enjoy was handicapped.
We are a body, and the body does not work until we all do our part. For many, they are carrying the weight of others and getting sore. For some, they are missing out on the play because they cannot keep up, and still for others, the simplest things, the things that should be reflexive become encumbered and difficult. Ya see, when we do not all contribute to the body, when we don’t show up, you can never be replaced, the rest of the body has to find a way to get along without you, it will never find another you!
My invitation for you is to see that you are not your own, you belong to all of us, and we belong to each other (Romans 8:4-5 -- “4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.”). Paul tells the church at Ephesus that until we all do our part the body will not be built up (Ephesians 4:12).
What is your part? What is your contribution? YOU!!!!!! Your presence, perspective, life experience, your personality, your victories and defeats, your successes and failures. Your personality, your dry sense of humor, or your intense outlook. It could be your goofy nature, or your systematic perspective. You are uniquely formed and uniquely gifted. We are designed to play, we are designed to drink deep of all that the Father has for us in Christ. I look forward to the play as we all do our part as we all are willing to bring who we are in Christ to the table!!