Functions of the Body
We are a part of the body of Christ, given a deep responsibility to help those who are desperate and hurting, who need the love of Christ which we have the honor of sharing. It is a deep trust given by our Lord and Savior, and one that I hold dearly. Therefore, as believers, He calls all of us to a higher standard–to lead and guide with love, grace, compassion, truth, accountability, and wisdom, wrapped up in constant prayer to our Lord for guidance in our own lives and the lives of those to whom we minister.
How we do that is to follow the example of Christ. He said in John 13:15 “For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you.” He had just taken time to wash the disciples feet in an act of service, but it was more than the washing of the feet that he was pointing out, he was talking about being a servant-leader, willing to do the most menial task, with a heart of service and gratitude and a vision of hope and healing. Paul also told us in Philippians 3:7ff to continue to seek the prize which awaits us in heaven and to follow the example given by him and others who were following Christ.
A few things that Christ did, was that He took time to listen, explain, and He met the needs of people where they were at, not where others thought He should have. He also used the gifts that the Father gave Him to further His kingdom.
My favorite passage of the Bible is Psalm 15:1-5 — “O LORD, who may abide in Your tent? Who may dwell on Your holy hill? He who walks with integrity, and works righteousness, and speaks truth in his heart. He does not slander with his tongue, nor does evil to his neighbor, nor takes up a reproach against his friend; …But who honors those who fear the LORD; He swears to his own hurt and does not change; He does not put out his money at interest, nor does he take a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things will never be shaken.
As believers, we have access to the throne of God, and because of that, we are to be servants of our God who walk with integrity, work righteousness, speak truth, lift others up, refrain from putting others down, show grace, and bear one another’s burdens, keep our word (our promise to the Lord of following Him, no matter the cost) even when it hurts, and use our resources the way the Lord wants us to use them, because when we are doing what is right, we will not be shaken, compromised, or living in fear of what others may think.
God understands that mistakes will be made, that ourselves get in the way of ourselves–that old flesh wants to creep up; however together, watching out for each other, we can overcome any obstacle (read Isaiah 57:13b and following) through God’s promises and His examples by applying those things to our lives.
Because of our position in Christ, and at the mission, we are held to a higher standard, and we are expected to live by that higher standard. We hold each other accountable, and we work with each other through our weaknesses. We address issues with each other in a godly and truthful way, seek forgiveness and reconciliation where needed, and move on. I believe Solomon got it right when he wrote, Ecc 4:9-12 Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor; for if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up. Furthermore, if two lie down together they keep warm, but how can one be warm alone?
And if one can overpower him who is alone, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not quickly torn apart.
(Submitted by Cord Cochran, Men’s Director at City Union Mission)