There’s this old game…I don’t know how old, but it’s called something like “Here’s the Church.” Do you remember it? There are many versions of it and you can even find it on YouTube. I’ll explain how I learned it. You play it with your hands…clasp them together, fingers on top and say, “Here’s the church,” then point your index fingers up and touch them while you say, “Here’s the steeple. Open the door,” flip your clasped hands over, “Where’s all the people?” Now, fold your hands together, intertwine your fingers together into your palms and repeat, “Here’s the church, here’s the steep, open the door,” flip your hands over and wiggle all your fingers, “There’s all the people!”
I really do have a point for sharing that game with you. I hope you figure it out. :)
The following is a “note” I posted to my personal Facebook account about three years ago. I happened to be re-reading my old notes and re-shared some of them. A very special (wonderful really) lady asked me to make a a copy of it for her and in the process, I decided to re-post it here as well.
So, I cried at church this Sunday. The tears were from frustration and from feeling like I’m letting people down. I’m so thankful for our worship pastor, though, who has been an encouragement. His heart is full of honesty in the words he says. Church, as I referred to it above, is a group of people, not a building… and as I briskly walked toward the bathroom, tears streaming down my cheeks, I saw the compassion of The Church. Not one person who saw me go, in my embarrassed state, had anything written on their face other than concern and love.
As I was in the bathroom, bent over the sink, trying to remove the evidence of tears from my cheeks and eyes, I was struck, just struck anew with what it is to be the Church. Just as my arm raises the hand that washes my eyes clean, so do the people who are a part of the body of Christ. Each person plays an integral part, each person cares for the needs of the other. When we work together in our special roles (each one is special, great or small), we make a complete set, a WHOLE.
We carry each other to the places we need to be. We hold each other up when we are hurt or in pain. I protect and gently hold my arm if it is broken or damaged. This is the example of Christ. Even when we see each other in a humbled state we do not give up on or ignore those pieces of us (the BODY OF CHRIST) that need some extra love. We pick each other up with encouraging words and a helping hand.
I was crying for myself- for not being good enough, but I was reminded (and lifted up) first by words then by the actions of those around me. The reminder was that for God I am good enough (because the Goodness of CHRIST resides in me), and for the rest of the Church I am good enough (because we are a part of ONE body), and that for me- I am what God wants me to be.
So, My Church Family, may God continue to grow you in the love of the body and the love of the lost. May He place the seed of the Gospel deep in your hearts so that the vine of Christ spills out from your doors and is used as the vine others are grafted into. May you be a light, shining in the darkness and may you be known by your love for each other as you serve in all faithfulness.
And there you have it. I’m a cry baby, but at least I got something encouraging out of it. :) Church isn’t a building, it’s the people inside it, who gather together and share their lives, loving and caring for each other’s needs. Now every time I read this, I am reminded and encouraged again. I hope it can embolden you to change the way you see and feel about church today, too. Or better yet- maybe it will remind you, as it has me, that life is not meant to be lived alone, nor are we designed for selfish pursuits. There’s so much joy in serving others and sharing.
Thanks for stopping in! I’d love to hear from you about some encouraging thing that’s happened for you lately. :)