We bought a twin bed frame a few months ago at Ikea for our daughter, Tamara. What we didn’t notice at the store is that the corners of the frame stick out a little further than the mattress. We placed the bed near the door, so almost every time I walk in or out of the room, I would hit my shin on the frame. And, boy, was it painful! I’ve even fallen over from the pain of stubbing my toe that my kids have asked if I needed to go to the hospital. Isn’t it amazing that you can hurt just a small part of your body, but the pain seems to travel to all other parts of your body?
The Bible says, “The eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I have no need of you,’ nor again the head to the feet, ‘I have no need of you.’ … If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.” (1 Corinthians 12:21,26). These verses, however, are not referring to a physical body. The Bible calls the church a body, more specifically, the body of Christ. Just as a body has many parts, so does a church. And as it is in a physical body, the parts, or members, of a church have a significant effect on one another. Every person in Christ’s church is a part of His body, and He Himself is the head of that body. God fashioned the church so that, not only does she need Christ, but her members need each other. I have a friend, a dear sister in Christ, who is suffering the pain and hurt of abandonment by her spouse. I have a brother in the Lord, who may be in his last days on this earth because of cancer. And I have another one in the family of God, who held her brother’s hand as he passed away. I suffer with them. I, too, feel their pain.
At church service yesterday, we sang …
Be still, my soul: the Lord is on thy side.
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain.
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change, He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul: thy best, thy heavenly Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.
I didn’t know every person’s story, but I could tell people were singing with all their hearts, casting their sorrows and cares at the feet of Jesus. My heart was heavy because of the afflictions of life. My heart was heavy because caring for a child with special needs is hard. Patience and love are not natural responses. Rather, they are the supernatural responses of someone who is completely dependent on God. I know cannot love my child without my God.
As I sang and listened to others sing … as we worshipped with one accord, we truly bore each others burdens, and we cast them on Christ.
(Photo Credit: m42newbie)