1 Corinthians 12:12-27
12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body, whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free, and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.
15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
Have you ever stubbed your toe? Have you ever stubbed it so hard you sprained or even broke your toe? There’s nothing they can do for a broken toe. The bone is too small to set. You just have to wait it out. What once was this small insignificant appendage on your foot has now taken over your entire life. You can’t walk correctly! Heck putting on a sock or shoe is absolute horror! Who knew something so small and insignificant could be so important! But it is. Every toe is as important as every finger, every hair, every skin cell, and every fiber of our being. God arranged them all in perfect harmony to make up who we are and function together as a unit.
Now apply that metaphor to the human race as Paul does in our passage from 1Corinthians above. Every single person has been created by God uniquely and specially for a purpose. When we work together, we accomplish what God has designed us for. We work in harmony with the strengths and weaknesses of our whole being.
But lately, it seems that the foot is raising cane with the ear. And the tongue is raising cane with the heart. And what is happening is that people are starting to cut off the feet around them. They are cutting off the ears of others. They are silencing the tongues of others because they don’t like what they hear. What starts to happen is that we start to limp without our toes, or we become cold without our hearts, or we become deaf without our ears. In short, we do not function as our Creator intended.
The world is not supposed to be governed by one idea and one mindset. That is tyranny. But instead, we have been created differently to work together and temper one another’s motives. Can you imagine how God feels when we tear each other apart for the convictions that He has placed within us? We tear down in each other what makes us unique and important to the body….if we do not agree with them.
Meditate on the scripture lesson above for several days. I have been. When I see the world so broken and divisive, I turn to God and ask, what are we doing wrong? And 1 Corinthians was where he led me. God created us different on purpose! In order that we can learn to be humble, wise, discerning, and cooperative. That is the only way we successfully live as the body of Christ. Ask yourself today, “Am I working in harmony with the body? Or am I a broken toe causing havoc at every turn?”
In closing, remember the age-old adage that God gave us two ears and only one mouth for a reason! To listen twice as much as we talk. Please join with me in brining unity back to the body in our world. Peace.