“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” 1 Corinthians 12:27
Doctors believe as soon as a baby’s born, they can differentiate between their mother and everyone else. They know her smell and the sound of her voice and that they belong to her, and will choose her over any other available person. It’s a survival necessity, to know where they belong, so they will get food, safety and comfort. As we get older, we start separating our identity from our parents, flourishing into individuals. This is a good thing, except when those individuals forget that they belong somewhere, and stay out by themselves. Those who forget where they belong go without necessary encouragement, validation of who they are, accountability, and forget what it is like to experience grace through another person. This is the very reason the writers of Hebrews warns against falling away with fellowship from other believers.*
With church the size it is now, it is easy to come in, sit down, and not be noticed. That is exactly what some of you want, as being in community left you with too much hurt. You would rather not play the game so you find other ways, maybe in the world, to satisfy that instinctual desire to belong somewhere. Even those of us who are part of one or more small groups can grow tired and resentful of those groups, as having to be in community with imperfect people can be less than desirable. Today we open up the place in us that is meant to belong somewhere, and ask God to reveal what our hang ups are and where we fit within our community.
What are your feelings on your current community? Are you getting the validation, encouragement and correction community is meant to give?
Are you harboring any resentments toward your community? Confess them here.
Lord, I know you made me to belong somewhere. Give me a sense of where that is and where who I am would best encourage others. Show me where I have harbored bitterness and resentment against community and heal me of the wounds that have been inflicted, leaving me reluctant to participate. Thank you for choosing to manifest Your grace through messy, imperfect people, and calling us to one another. Amen.