Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. (Rom 12:4-6 NIV)
Sadly people’s nature is such that each person sees him/herself as an independent entity, closed off and with no responsibility towards others. In contradiction to this the holy apostles teaches us about the Church as a body with every Christians being (just) a member of it. So nobody is a whole on his/her own. Each one is charged to get to know his/her own capacity and limitations, his/her own shape and gift together and all that he/she is to serve the entire body of Christ and to be satisfied to serve as a single member belonging to the one large, holy body of Jesus.
There is beautiful and lovely wisdom in this reality of Christ’s body and his holy Christian Church. Whoever is an enemy of egoistic Individualism, but a friend of true unity, should strife to comprehend this apostolic teaching of the Church. Each and every one is to find the one Lord, whom he can bear: Christ, the Supreme! No envy gets to him as nobody is placed into a position in this body of Christ, where he does not belong for Christ fits his members perfectly into place – created and called just for that.
Dear heavenly Father! We desire to live your community and be edified in it. Let us be living building blocks that help carry your Church. Make us faithful members of your sons body. Grant and help that we and our children are dedicated totally to you as living sacrifice and that we worship you in priestly decorum, fighting for you. Form us your evangelical Christendom to continue growing as your people and members of your boundless grace. Amen (O.J. Mehl)
Heart and heart together bound, Seek in God your true repose, In your love the price be found Of your Saviour’s love and woes; We the members, He the Head, We the rays and He the Sun, Brethren by our Master led, In our Lord we all are one.
Thus, O truest Friend, unite All Thy consecrated band, That their hearts be set aright To fulfil Thy last command. Each must onward urge his friend, Helping him in word and deed, Love’s blest pathway to ascend, Following where Thou dost lead. (Nikolaus Ludwig Graf von Zinzendorf, 1700-1760)
(Translation of Wilhelm Löhe’s devotion for Monday after the 1st Sunday after Epiphany as found on Pg. 55 in Lob sei Dir ewig, o Jesu! (Eternal Praise to you o Jesus!) edited by A. Schuster and puplished in the Freimund Verlag, Neuendettelsau 1949.)