Members of the Body

2022-01-23 – Year C – Epiphany 3 – The Rev. Canon Christopher M. Klukas
Nehemiah 8:1-12; Psalm 113; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; Luke 4:14-21

  • Costco Membership: benefits include being able to shop at the store, access to deals on various services, and cash back on all your purchases.

The Body of Christ – 1 Corinthians 12:12-14

  • Biblical Church Membership is different from the worldly idea of membership.
    • World: I pay my dues which entitles me to benefits.
    • Church: I am in indispensable part of God’s mission team.
      • William Temple, Abp. of Canterbury, “’The church is the only institution that exists primarily for the benefit of those who are not its members.”
      • Our vision: Loving our neighbors and helping them to find God, love, God, and share God.
  • We need you, and you need us.
  • What is your role on our church team?

Thinking too Little of Yourself

  • 1 Corinthians 12:15-16 – “…becasue I am not a hand I do not belong to the body.”
  • Doubting the Father’s love for you – John 3:16
  • Imposter Syndrome – “the experience of feeling like a phony—you feel as though at any moment you are going to be found out as a fraud—like you don’t belong where you are, and you only got there through dumb luck.”
    • Spiritual Imposter Syndrome “I’m not a good enough Christian” “I’m not skilled enough in the things God is calling me to do.”
    • Hebrews 13:20–21 – “equip you with everything good that you may do his will.”
    • 2 Corinthians 4:7 – Jars of Clay – God’s power not ours.
  • Thinking too little of your gifts – “my ‘gift’ is nothing special. Anyone can do what I do.” It may not seem like much to you, but it is remarkable to someone who doesn’t share your gift, just like you find the gifts of others to be remarkable.
  • All of these are lies from the enemy, Satan (lit. adversary or accuser).
  • In truth, your gifts are needed. YOU are needed.
    • 1 Corinthians 12:17 – If the whole Church was just like me, we would be missing out. If the whole Church was just like you, we would be missing out.
    • 1 Corinthians 12:18 – “just as he chose.” Your gifts are God’s plan.

Practicing Humility

  • Sometimes we value our own gifts too much and those of others not enough. Pride in our gifts can puff us up and cause us to look down on others.
    • 1 Corinthians 12:21-22 “The eye cannot say to the hand…”
  • David Livingston
  • Instead of Pride. We need to seek the opposite virtue of humility.
    • Romans 12:3 – “don’t think of yourself more highly than you ought to think.”
  • Rememeber that you are a jar of clay. It is God’s power working through you.

Going it Alone

  • In Person attendance is down from what it was before the pandemic:
    • Health shifts
    • Fear
    • Habit Shifts
    • Silently slipped away
  • Hebrews 10:24–25 – “not neglecting to meet together…”
  • Lifeway Transformational Discipleship Assessment – Daniel Im, analyzing this research, noted that three practices “predicted a higher score across all eight discipleship attribute goals…1. Reading the Bible 2. Attending a worship service at your church 3. Attending small classes or groups…”
    • These are some of the most important practices to help you grow as a Christian. Notice that two of the three a community disciplines!
  • Supporting one another through joys and sorrows – 1 Corinthians 12:25-26
  • Reaching out to others is most effectively accomplished as a team. Jesus sent out his disciples in pairs.
  • We need you, and you need us. Let us all recommit ourselves to the wonderful and sacred mystery of Christ’s Church!

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