“But speaking the truth in love, let us grow in every way into Him who is the head – Christ. From Him the whole body, fitted and knit together by every supporting ligament, promotes the growth of the body for building up itself in love by the proper working of each individual part.” (Ephesians 4:15-16 CSB)
The human body is a remarkable entity. It is an extremely complex unit that requires careful and constant coordination in order to function properly. It is composed of numerous systems: circulatory, respiratory, sensory, nervous, digestive, connective, reproductive, skeletal, and immune systems, for example. Within each system are a multitude of parts, each with its own function. In some cases, a part by itself may seem only to exist, but put that part where it belongs and let it function as it is intended, and you will contribute to the welfare of the body, whether in large portion or small. All the parts of the body have value. The little toe would not seem to have a great deal of value, but kick it real hard into an unseen table, and it will tell you how important it is. A ligament that holds a knee together seems to just be there, but put some intense pressure on it, as in a football game injury, and you will learn quickly how important it is.
The church, the body of Christ, is likewise extremely complex. For the church to be what God wants it to be, to grow in the way God wants it to grow, and to serve in the way God wants it to serve, all of the parts need to first be there, and then they need to each actually function. That is when body life takes place, and that is when the church not only exists but grows. Each believer, working individually but also in cooperation with all the other believers in the body, serves to take care of the body and build it up.
Lord, Help each of us function today in Your body, the church, as You have intended. Help us to never conclude that our function is not really important or crucial to the work of the body, and help us instead to simply and faithfully carry out the tasks you have assigned us, for Your honor and glory. Amen.