Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Every Part Rejoices


If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.  
1 Corinthians 12:26 NIV

I was in a meeting yesterday where 1 Corinthians 12:12-26 was read and discussed. The passage talks about the body of Christ, made up of many members, each with different gifts, talents, and roles to play within the body.

While the conversation centered around the entire passage, focusing on being there for one another through suffering, my thoughts zeroed in on the second half of 1 Corinthians 12:26…

…if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

Friends, we—you and I—make up the body of Christ. Each of us have different gifts and talents to offer…which lead us to different places on this journey in faith we’re on. Places that often lead us to comparison, competition, and jealously of others.

Ouch. I hate to admit that sometimes jealously is my first reaction when someone I know is honored, long before rejoicing.

Maybe you can relate—

when a co-worker gets the promotion…

when fellow blogger’s post goes viral…

when someone else is asked to speak at a conference…

when the sales of another author’s book take off

—and your congratulations is a little more forced than you let on.

…if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. 

Last year, I ran a series of posts by guest contributors titled, “Comparing Ourselves to Others…and what it does to us.” Based on the comments and feedback on that series, I know I’m not alone in this struggle. After all, we’re human, with human emotions and dreams…and sometimes watching someone else’s dream come to fruition stings.

Because somewhere along the way, we’ve reasoned that one person’s success takes away our opportunity for success.

It sounds kind of silly, doesn’t it? There is not a shortage of work to be done in God’s Kingdom, and yet we convince ourselves it’s a competition, with the notion that if she gets there first, there is no room for me.

The enemy must love this because once we’ve opened the door to comparison, he doesn’t even have to force his way in. It’s an open invitation for him to shout the lies of how we aren’t good enough.

…if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

God has given us different skills and abilities as He chooses. He directs the path and the time for which our gifts can serve others.

But...I wonder how often our jealously and frustration cause us to quit before our time comes.

Think about it for a moment. Have you ever been to that edge of discouragement and you decide to just give it up? What if your time of being honored was just around the corner? And you missed it.

It gives me a sick feeling to think I missed something God was leading me to because I let jealously get in the way.   

So, what if we don’t let that happen? What if we put our emotions and ambitions aside, and stand united against the enemy?

Instead, we’ll stand united for God’s Kingdom work, no matter what our individual roles may be.

That means when one part of the body of Christ is honored, every part rejoices with it.

And, friends, I’m rejoicing with you today.

In Christ,
Laura

8 comments:

  1. I definitely identify with this. God is speaking to me on this very subject. I have been upset at him for not letting me be the "popular" blog or what not....so silly. I want people to read my words. I want to be popular! Yikes. so much sin in my heart. I like what Kelly Balarie said in her rarlinkup this week-its not about us, its about Him. Oh this stubborn and hardened heart! I want to get over this so I too can be doing the work he wants me to do. This is a great post. I love what you have to say right here:" But...I wonder how often our jealously and frustration cause us to quit before our time comes." Yes. yes. Yes. May jealousy and frustration not be a reason I quit and something God has called me to do. Thanks for sharing your thoughts today. Loved it. Your neighbor at #tellhisstory

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  2. We all need to hear this frequently. I recently wrote about it in a blog called "Becoming Icicles" (comparing ourselves to others). This is the line I needed today: "Have you ever been to that edge of discouragement and you decide to just give it up? What if your time of being honored was just around the corner? And you missed it." Thank you. Been feeling very discouraged lately, but I don't want to miss it either. Coming to you from #RaRaLinkup. Blessings from "Espressos of Faith"!

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  3. Your post resonates with me. So much focus on individual accomplishment--but we shouldn't be competing with each other! Still learning to rejoice with the success of others, and that becomes easier when I focus on Jesus & God's kingdom.

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  4. Oh, Laura, the enemy truly does love this sort of competition, resentment, and such. We are one and we are NOT of this world. Oh, that I would remember these things.
    With love and...
    Caring through Christ, ~ linda

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  5. Amen! Amen! Let's put it aside. Thank you for calling out these lies for what they are. I think so many of us are greatly encouraged by your words today. I am! Cheering you from the #RaRalinkup on Purposeful Faith.

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  6. Always good to see you and how you are sharing your thoughtfulness with photos and the Word and other words from people. Again, thank you.

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  7. I absolutely love your three words - EVERY PART REJOICES - and the ones that follow. Goodness, this is a much-needed message. I'm so glad you linked up at #ThreeWordWednesday.

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  8. Thank you for linking this with us at Grace and Truth last week. I love the idea of every part rejoicing and the freedom that comes with it!
    Jen :)

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Thank you for sharing your thoughts!