“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 Corinthians 12:24-27
I had one job. Get the babies’ bottles ready for a day out. Two babies x 3 feedings = six bottles. One baby gets the purple formula. One baby gets the yellow formula. Pour the special baby water (I never knew there was such a thing!) into the clean and sterilized bottles. Put the bottles of water in the cooler bag for the day. Put the pouches of already measured powder into the bag. Half purple, half yellow. Six bottles of water: check. Six pouches of powdered formula check. One bag to carry it all check. I got my job done, and loaded the kids into the car with the special bottle bag, the diaper bag, the stroller, and everything else we might need for a morning out with two babies.
I had everybody and everything in the car, with the car running waiting for my wife to join us. Lionel Richie’s “Dancing on the ceiling” was playing on the radio, the windows were down, and it was going to be a great day.
My wife gets in the car, and I give her the customary glance at the clock and my casually miffed tone, “Nice of you to join us.” She looks at me and says back, “You got everything?” Yep! Six bottles filled with special water. Six pouches of pre-measured formula powder: half purple/half yellow. One special bottle bag. One diaper bag. One stroller. Two babies. One radio now playing Kool n the Gang. Four windows down and one car running waiting for you.
“You SURE you got everything?” Now, I’ve been around this relationship long enough to know that even if I’m sure I’ve got it all, there must be something I’m missing. Sure enough, my wife pulls out a little bag and shows me the one thing I had forgotten that would be critical to a successful morning out with the twins: the nipples for the bottles. What would have been a wonderful day out could have been destroyed by two hungry babies and a very upset wife, but fortunately she’s been around this relationship long enough to look around the prep area to see if I forgot anything. And, of course I did, and of course she found it before it became a problem.
She and I belong together, and often make up for each others’ weaknesses. (Yes, she makes up for more of mine than I do hers!) Each of us is necessary to the other.
So it is with the Body of Christ. Like a marriage needing both parts, the Body of Christ needs all the parts to function. Every part is necessary. If I left behind one little piece of the bottle system I would’ve endangered the entire mission for the day. Every part is necessary!
That means YOU are necessary. No matter how small or insignificant you might feel, your presence is vital. The Body of Christ cannot function without you. Be present. Learn your role. Live out your calling in the Church. We need you! You are important.
Dear Jesus, thank you for making us a part of you. Amen.