"Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it." 1 Cor. 12:27
Growing up, I remember as early as second grade singing a hymn that went very simply:
I am the church
You are the church
We are the church together
All who follow Jesus
All around the world
Yes, we're the church together!
The whole point of the song, as the verses continue, is that church is not merely a building. Rather, the church references the people involved. It doesn't matter where they come together, it's the different spiritual gifts that combine to create a community, an extended family led by God the father, saved by Christ the son, unified in faith by the Holy Spirit.
|"Who's the king of the jungle?"|
Oh, how I wish this were the end of the post! (insert long, dramatic sigh...)
As a people, we have all of the gifts to create flawless church services as we reliably did just a few months ago, but we are now painfully aware of how valuable it was to have a leader to organize us all. Metaphorically, it's like taking a peek of the disaster our lives would quickly become without the Holy Spirit's persistent guidance and direction. Our new pastor can't get here soon enough!
Manila (and it took three church-supported fundraisers to get us there). Every Tuesday morning I meet with a group of a dozen or so women for intensive Bible studies on topics as far reaching as Roman history to the apocalypse to meditation. My faith (and my understanding of God) has grown tremendously from being part of this group of spiritual leaders. That's in addition to at least two other Bible studies going on churchwide throughout the week. And you may recall our church created a mural of the entire world from paint and supplies and time donated by our members (and a special visitor) in just five days.
|Putting the books of the Bible in order|
|"In this world you will have trouble,|
But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:3
I am so aware now more than ever about the role the church body plays in our lives, our community, and our world. I am grateful for the members of our church who continue to give and teach and pray even when, at times, it seems we are running on fumes. Somehow (supernaturally, perhaps) we keep on, not only running, but staying the course. And I have the utmost faith that this rickety era in our church's inability to conduct perfect services will one day be something its members look back and laugh about with our awesome new pastor. "Remember that Sunday when there were two sermons? Hahaha!" (Yes, this really happened.)
It's times like this that I must so faithfully remember... or rather, am so painfully reminded... that I am the church... you are the church....
And for better or for worse, we are the church together. May God help us all. That, after all, may just be the whole point.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6