All the Parts Make the Whole (365 Days of Daring Faith — DAY 351)
Romans 12:4-5 (NLT)
Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.
It is interesting that the church is compared to the physical body. Without any one part of our body in place and fully functioning, it can be said that we cannot fully operate at our highest capacity. The church is a lot like this. If everyone is merely pew warming and not fully participating, then the church will not function at its highest capacity.
The church is much more than a building that we go to on Sundays. It is made up of people. What we believe and the way we live our lives will make up the dynamic of the church. Every single person in the church is necessary and needed in order for the church to have a good impact on the world.
Sometimes, as believers, we tend to think that all we need is God and the bible to make it in life. In some respects, your point is well stated. However, God made us relational, social beings for a reason. He wanted us to be in horizontal and vertical connections — with him and with others. We are not lone rangers put on a journey to fend for ourselves. Other people — our brothers and sisters — are available and willing to help us make the right decisions and pull through difficult times.
In God’s world, it is not every man for himself. It is every man for his brother and sister. If one part of the body is not working, the entire body suffers. When the muscles are not working, the whole body is weak. When one arm, or one foot, or the brain, or the heart or any other part of the body is not functioning at its highest capacity and doing what it was made to do, the entire body fails to operate at optimum speed.
God created the church because he wanted a universal community by which people could come and receive hope, grace, joy, peace, and forgiveness and then turn around and give that very same hope, grace, joy, peace, and forgiveness to others. One person alone cannot do this; it takes all of us together. All the parts make up the whole. “We all belong to each other” because we need each other and whether we make progress or regress in our faith and spiritual journey depends a large part on the relationship we have with the church and whether we are sincere participators or mere spectators.
If you are a part of a church family, make sure you make time for them as you would with any important relationship. Don’t push it to the back burner or put in the last place on your agenda. You are a vital part of the church. It needs you and you need it. Some of the happiest people in the world are not just those who visit their local church occasionally or give to their local church each week. It is those who participate in the mission of their church and use their skills and abilities to further God’s kingdom and help those in need.
“You can be committed to Church but not committed to Christ, but you cannot be committed to Christ and not committed to church.”
— Joel Osteen