The church struggles to look like what heaven will be, flooded with people of all races, and nationality.
Having spent some of the weekend in the hospital, I regretfully am behind again in my personal bible study. In my reading this Monday morning, I came across a blog that bore a rather deep question:
Should The Church Reflect Heaven?
It was an eye raiser to be sure! Yet, in contemplating this question…it did not take long to find an answer. That answer being yes.
The church, is the body of Christ.
1 Corinthians 12:12-31New International Version (NIV)
Unity and Diversity in the Body
12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by[c] 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. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.
15 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.16 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.17 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?18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21 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!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 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,24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it,25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues[d]? Do all interpret? 31 Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.
Each of us is a part of the same body, but we each have our own unique talents as well as gifts. This is something that I cannot help but wonder if we forget… as we look upon our different colored brothers and sisters, our elderly, our young, our sick, as well as our poor and disabled. We forget that while we may not all be able to preach or give large sums of our money for tithes…that some of us have other beautiful gifts to share.
So instead the church becomes a house of competition for God’s glory. We forget the love in which Jesus showed unto ALL His disciples as well as unto a world that rejected Him. That same love is what He urged us all to continue to share so that the Holy Spirit might be seen, felt, as well as experienced by all.
So perhaps the next time we see our brothers and sisters, we need not focus on our differences in such a way that we look down upon one another. Rather we need to look upon our brothers and sisters in Christ and try to look upon them as Christ would.
May You Be Blessed This Monday…