Saturday, October 24, 2015

Thoughts on Romans 12; Working Together

"Two are better than one", Ecclesiastes tells us. "For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness," expounds Romans 12:3-8.

Each of us has our own unique talents and gifts, as well as our own particular faults and struggles. Alone, the Lord can use us. But when we work together, we are able to stand firmer and accomplish more.

In a family, and in the body of Christ, we have been given others around us to join forces with. Some of us might pick up all the "front line" details, while others of us might prefer to stand on the sidelines, picking up the needs that are often forgot. Some of us are problem solvers, others are wonderful at keeping things calm when a couple of personalities clash during a project. Some are able to be active and take up the physically hard aspects of a job, while others may be staying inside cooking the meal that will be given when those who are working need a break. Some have the means to support those who are struggling financially, some love to mentor those younger then they, some make it a point to draw out the lonely or bring a smile to the weary. At our old church, we cleaned the church twice a week; the church doesn't know how often Daddy made repairs on their vacuums, for free and without mentioning it, that would have cost them quite a bit if he hadn't taken the initiative to take it home and use the tools he already had from his own household repair jobs. Mama delights in serving those we know with a fresh, homemade meal whenever a need for one is brought to her attention. There are countless other ways that we can use the abilities the Lord has handpicked for us to contribute to those around us.

It doesn't matter what our gift is, it only matters that we share it with those around us. We cannot hide it, from selfishness or fear. And whatever our faults, we cannot be upset when others try to help us in conquering them. And we can not be jealous of the gifts that others have been given. The Lord has specifically planned the days "that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them," Psalm 139. "For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well."

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"May the Lord, the God of your fathers... bless you!" Deuteronomy 1:11