Are You Important?

Let’s have the Apostle Paul answer that one:

The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up only one body. So it is with the body of Christ…

Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am only an ear and not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? Suppose the whole body were an eye—then how would you hear? Or if your whole body were just one big ear, how could you smell anything? 

But God made our bodies with many parts, and he has put each part just where he wants it. What a strange thing a body would be if it had only one part! Yes, there are many parts, but only one body. The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.” The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.” 

In fact, some of the parts that seem weakest and least important are really the most necessary. And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So we carefully protect from the eyes of others those parts that should not be seen, while other parts do not require this special care. So God has put the body together in such a way that extra honor and care are given to those parts that have less dignity. This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other equally. If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad. 

Now all of you together are Christ’s body, and each one of you is a separate and necessary part of it. (1 Corinthians 12:12, 14-27 NLT)

At the end of the month, at our annual Blast-Off BBQ, we’ll have a chance to see where God is working and decide where He would have us serve. What gifts do you have? Where are your passions? As a precious part of the body of Christ, you have an important part to fill. Will you?

What’s in a gift?

We just finished our birthday season. It begins (I like to think) in September, with my birthday. Then it goes month-to-month with 3 of my children, a two-month break after the new year and resumes with my first-born, and finally my wife in April. We have fun celebrations with family and friends and we always eat really well. Really well.

Many thoughtful, special, even needed gifts are given to the honored individual. Each of the gifts are given out of the resources of the person giving the gift. Almost an extension of who they are, what they have. Sometimes you can know who gave the gift just by looking at the wrapping, and sometimes the contents. Continue reading

Got Enough?

There is a Finnish Proverb that reads: “Happiness is a place between too little and too much.”

But can you really have too little? Too much? Agur, the very little known writer of Proverbs 30 explains what would happen if the Lord’s provision was too far from “enough”.

“…give me neither poverty nor riches! Give me just enough to satisfy my needs. For if I grow rich, I may deny you and say, “Who is the LORD?” And if I am too poor, I may steal and thus insult God’s holy name.” (Proverbs 30:8-9 NLT)

The apostle Paul said, “I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.” Not because he was so great: “Boy, look at me. Aren’t I something!” No, he goes on to say, “For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.” (Philippians 4:12-13 NLT)

When he was little, my son Caleb had a very innocent way in which he gave thanks. He would sometimes pray at the dinner table and thank God for each of us (including himself) and usually included this phrase: “Thank you for the things we like, and the things we don’t like.” Granted, he’s talking about some of the food we’re about to eat that he’s not too crazy about, but that pretty much covers it doesn’t’ it? Let’s replace “like” for “have”. God has placed us right where we are, with what we have. Now are there things we shouldn’t strive for? Not necessarily, but still pursue godliness. Read 1 Timothy 6:6-11.

I’ve heard it best said like this: “Contentment is not having what you want, but wanting what you have.” And that should be enough.