Key Texts: 1 Corinthians 12:12-27
Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by[a] 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. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.
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. 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. 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? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
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!” On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 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, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
I love the Apostle Paul’s use here of the physical body as a metaphor for the body of Christ – the Church.
Do you feel necessary and needed in the body of Christ? Paul makes it clear that you are needed, whether you feel it or not.
This is one of the greatest reasons why we must do all we can to appreciate each other’s unique vocational calling and gifts – and do all we can to set aside petty differences and disagreements.
We all have an important part to play in the work of God’s kingdom. We all have important, and different, gifts of the Spirit. We all have a vocation.
Are we actively helping our brothers and sisters in Christ to live out their calling?
If not, not only the body of Christ, but the world itself will suffer.