Creating Bonds in the Body

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. – (1 Corinthians 12:25-26)

 

First and foremost, we are called to be a part of the body of Christ. We were created for relationship with God and with people. His intention was not for us to hide out with a few fellow like-minded souls for His sake, but rather to invest in the bigger body of Christ. We are called to contribute the gifts that He has placed in each of us, and to love and care for one another, despite our differences. Our hearts ought to celebrate the strengths of our sisters and brothers, not become points of envy nor contention. When someone is suffering, we are invited to walk beside them and extend our strength and support, and as one is honored, we are meant to rise up and rejoice alongside them in their accomplishments. Unity in the body comes as we live life together – in sorrow and in celebration. As we are able to be real with one another, we are creating bonds in the body as Christ intended. May we go forth this day in faith, with genuine concern for the body of believers around us. Let our hearts be united in purpose as we seek to serve Him well.

 

Let not division,Creating Bonds in the Body

find way enter in;

for though we’re many,

we are all for Him.

No gift is greater,

but all are the same;

granted by Jesus,

to spread His great Name.

Build up the body,

united in Him;

grieve when there’s mourning,

rejoice when they win.

Walk with each other,

united in love;

as God intended,

our hope from above.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You created each of us with different gifts for different roles to build Your church. Thank You that no role nor gift is greater than another in Your eyes. Thank You that You ask us to love one another the same – to suffer with the suffering and to rejoice with those who are honored. Forgive us for seeing ourselves as less than or greater than we ought to, and help us to focus all of our attention on what we can accomplish for You and in You, rather than anything that is focused on self. Teach us to trust You more, so that we may operate in the light of Your love. Lead us to love well, so that we may invest in the lives of those around us. Show us how we are to grieve with those in mourning and celebrate with those who are rejoicing. May many come into a saving relationship with You as we seek to honor You in all that we say and do. Be glorified, O God, as we live and love as Your body of believers. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

Let love and faithfulness never leave you; …write them on the tablet of your heart. – Proverbs 3:3

God’s Gift in Grief

It is not good to navigate grief, nor face trials all on our own.  God gives us people to walk beside us and keep watch.  Though our first and foremost resource is our Heavenly Father, He created us to need people too.  In the glory of His goodness, He allows people to be His hands, heart and voice.  Jesus in us, makes Christ tangible to others, when we are faithful friends who do life with one another.

This morning, as I read further in Matthew, something stood out to me in a new way.  “Then He said to them, ‘My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death.  Stay here and keep watch with me.” – (Matthew 26:38)  Though Jesus, who was fully God, did not need to have people with Him, He wanted to have friends near Him in His hour of need to keep watch, as He knew what He would soon endure.  If the God of all creation wants to keep friends near when trials come, how much more should we desire the same?  We are relational creatures, created to be in relationship with God and with people.  We must do both to obey the greatest command: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and, Love your neighbor as yourself.” – (Luke 10:27, also Mt 22:37, Mk 12:30) 

God’s greatest gift,OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

in the face of grief;

His heart made known,

friendship’s sweet relief.

For we are called,

to love people well;

as Christ loves us,

our actions do tell.

To walk beside,

through the good and bad;

grants glimpses of,

our Heavenly Dad.

Seek Father first,

and let people in;

we are all made,

for sweet communion.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You created us to be relational people.  Thank You that even Jesus, in His hour of need, wanted to have those closest to Him nearby.  Though His priority was time with You, the nearness of friends was also good.  Forgive us for the times that we isolate ourselves, not wanting to bother those who care about us and are a gift from You, and for the times that our priorities are out of order and we do not seek You first.  Help us to know the balance.  Teach us how to seek You first, and to know when to reach out, and when we are meant to sit in Your presence on our own for a time.  Thank You that You love us so well.  May we be a blessing to those around us, as we choose to love as we are loved.  May many come to know You as their Redeemer and Friend.  Be glorified in our love for You and for those around us.  Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.