Read: 1 Corinthians 12:18-26

This portion of scripture can be a bit puzzling at first. Maybe that is just me. I read pretty fast and I don’t read all the words. That got me into trouble yesterday. I asked my daughter if she needed me to pick Finley up at daycare. She asked her husband and then responded: “He does want you to pick her up.” I read: “He doesn’t want you to pick her up.” And I responded: “OK”. A few hours later, when I still hadn’t picked her up, and I had left my phone inside while I worked in our landscaping, I had a frantic daughter and an annoyed husband. I said I didn’t want to babysit my phone outside. He said he didn’t want to babysit me. Ha! Anyway, I digress. I should read all the words.

Here is the gist of this passage: the body has many parts. Some of them need special care so we clothe those parts and treat them with great care. The more honorable parts – like our heads for instance – don’t need special care. They can just be all showy and out for everyone to see. The stomach and intestines, on the other hand, are encased in our abdomen, covered with skin and muscle for protection. God put the body together so that the parts that need special care are in a place where they can receive it. The body works together to take care of itself. And in this way, we stay healthy and strong.

In order to care for our physical body, there are times when we abstain from certain foods. For example, my sister developed eczema. Now she had never been bothered with this before, but suddenly it appeared everywhere. In an effort to rid her body of this skin affliction, she quit eating gluten. Her head loves bread and pasta and beer, but because she cares for her whole body, she foregoes the pleasure of eating gluten. And it has produced good results in her skin.

This must be how we care for one another in the body of Christ and in our communities. We don’t all have the same function, but we are all important and provide a necessary service. Some are more showy, but may actually be less important. Others are less noticeable, but provide a part that would be immediately missed if not done.

Are you walking out your God-given role in community? Who could you encourage along the way? Is there anyone who provides a less noticeable role that needs a little boost? Let’s work together to make a healthy community that functions at its best.

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