Saturday, March 28, 2009

Saturday Selah: I Am Important to the Body of Christ

Saturday SelahToday I am going to share the weekend devotion I am reading from the Women's Devotional Bible, © 1990 Zondervan Publishing. It starts with a beautiful quote from Madeleine L`Engle.

My moments of being most complete, most integrated, have come either in complete solitude or when I am being part of a body made up of many people going in the same direction.

A vivid example is a great symphony orchestra, where each instrument is completely necessary for the whole; a violin cannot take the place of a trombone, nor cymbals of the harp; and there are even times when the lowly triangle is the focus of the music.
Take a bit of time to examine yourself. When are you "most complete, most integrated"? Return to that place, that situation, to regain the healthy sense of self that is so easily lost n our world's clamor and activity.

Saturday - Psalm 131:1-3 [NIV]
My heart is not proud, O LORD, my eyes are not haughty; I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful for me. But I have stilled and quieted my soul; like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, put your hope in the LORD both now and forevermore.

Sunday - 1 Corinthians 12:14-27 [MSG]
I want you to think about how all this makes you more significant, not less. A body isn't just a single part blown up into something huge. It's all the different-but-similar parts arranged and functioning together. If Foot said, "I'm not elegant like Hand, embellished with rings; I guess I don't belong to this body," would that make it so? If Ear said, "I'm not beautiful like Eye, limpid and expressive; I don't deserve a place on the head," would you want to remove it from the body? If the body was all eye, how could it hear? If all ear, how could it smell? As it is, we see that God has carefully placed each part of the body right where he wanted it.

But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of. An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn't be a body, but a monster. What we have is one body with many parts, each its proper size and in its proper place. No part is important on its own. Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, "Get lost; I don't need you"? Or, Head telling Foot, "You're fired; your job has been phased out"? As a matter of fact, in practice it works the other way—the "lower" the part, the more basic, and therefore necessary. You can live without an eye, for instance, but not without a stomach. When it's a part of your own body you are concerned with, it makes no difference whether the part is visible or clothed, higher or lower. You give it dignity and honor just as it is, without comparisons. If anything, you have more concern for the lower parts than the higher. If you had to choose, wouldn't you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair?

The way God designed our bodies is a model for understanding our lives together as a church: every part dependent on every other part, the parts we mention and the parts we don't, the parts we see and the parts we don't. If one part hurts, every other part is involved in the hurt, and in the healing. If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance.

You are Christ's body—that's who you are! You must never forget this. Only as you accept your part of that body does your "part" mean anything.


Esthermay said...

Self-importance only makes the body sick.
So does trying to out-humble others.

I LOVE the triangle!
And if that’s all I’m meant to be – fine.
It’s when I reach that point of humility about it without letting everyone else know about my humility that I can really serve the body.

I can’t say I’m there yet.

I like these thoughts.

Faye said...