22 Instead, the parts of the body that people think are the weakest are the most necessary. 23 The parts of the body that we think are less honorable are the ones we honor the most. The private parts of our body that aren’t presentable are the ones that are given the most dignity. 24 The parts of our body that are presentable don’t need this. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the part with less honor 25 so that there won’t be division in the body and so the parts might have mutual concern for each other.
1 Corinthians 12:22-25, Common English Bible (CEB)
Paul argues that every member of the body is necessary. There are no exceptions. Those body parts that are deemed weaker, less honorable, or less presentable are all very important. Paul rejected the Corinthians criteria for evaluating which gifts were most honorable.
The only purpose of the gifts was to build up the body of Christ; the true measure for the greatness of any gift would be its usefulness to the body of Christ. By now you’re reading this thinking Shana what does this have to do with our church?
Every church has people who are out in the forefront and love the public spotlight. But what is really essential to the ongoing life of the church is the people behind the scenes—those who serve faithfully and quietly (and often are the ones who make the leaders look good).
We tend to forget that many of the strengths we so admire in one person are often incompatible with the strengths we admire in another.
The grace of a figure skater is useless to a Sumo wrestler.
The hard-working research and study of my favorite theologian doesn’t leave much time for the world traveling compassion of my favorite missionary.
If you are interested in finding out what your strengths and gifts are, come talk to me. I would love to be in conversation with you about where you are being called to serve in the life of our church.
Peace & Love Always,