I was reading through 1 Corinthians (mainly because we have started a new series in church going through the letter) and I stopped at chapter 12 and it made me think about my elect study for Relay. The title is ‘How are people transformed and what is the role of the church?’ (At least that’s what it is at the moment, it changes every time I ask JT).
Consider 2 Corinthians 12:12-31. It is all about membership in the body of Christ. This is the imense privilege we have as Christians. We are baptised by one Spirit into one body. Amazing. So how should this look in the church. I think this point has been mentioned over at Saintbeagle, it has been mentioned here before and it was commented upon at NWA. Our churches should be filled with two categories of people. Those whom are not saved (yet) and those who are members of the body of Christ, faithfully serving in whatever role they are gifted in.
In practice this would truly be amazing. If every Christian were to act upon this belief our churches would be incredible places to be. Anyone who has spent anytime in church will now that this is not the case. However, I don’t want this post to be condemning, quite the opposite. While we may not be fully functioning like one body, we should look for the encouragements where the body is slowly uniting. The best way for myself to imagine how this looks is to think of a rugby team. They are made up of different types of people. You have short and tall. Fat and the not so fat. Some are quick some are incredibly slow. But alone they are just individuals, but together they form a team. They train hard to pursue their goals. They work on their weaknesses, and improve on their strengths. Our churches are like a rugby team. Just like a rugby team you need to keep improving, you wont get their overnight.
JT preached on evidences of grace two Sunday’s ago, and he loved it. He has blogged about it pretty much everyday (it feels like it anyway). While our churches are filled with holding paddocks of Christians not serving Christ in one functioning body there are evidences of grace; and the more you spot them the more you will see. While I was in church this Sunday I scanned the place and I witnessed evidences of grace. I looked at new members serving, old members continuing to faithfully serve without recognition for their work. I saw people extending hospitality, warm welcomes for new visitors. I wont continue (JT has mentioned much more on his blog) but look for the evidences of grace. We have been encouraged in Ammanford to do so, and I encourage you to do the same.