Many Parts, One Body (with tangents)

Romans 12: For 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, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.

I, being an almost-done-with-school music major, was leaning forward in my seat a few months ago when the pastor preaching at The Ransom Church in Sioux Falls gave an analogy of an orchestra having many different parts, but together make a beautiful sound.  It’s true.  The whole “many parts, one body,” analogy that Paul preaches so many times throughout the Epistles makes more sense to me all the time.  When I was younger, I thought I was worthless, and called myself a pinkie toe, cuz the body doesn’t really need it to function (seriously, I’ve met people who don’t have pinkie toes before).  You don’t even notice your pinkie toe until you run into a chair or something and it’s facing a different direction than the rest of your toes (not that I’ve done that or anything).  But then I realized that the analogy was talking more about the hands and feet that do God’s work, the body parts behind the scenes that make all these things run smoothly.  You don’t notice your abs, either, unless they’re hurting from actually using them.  You might notice other abs, but God’s creation was meant to be admired.  I play percussion in my college band, and the percussion can be boring sometimes.  But it’s like the abs that keep everything together and up to tempo that the director (the smart brain keeping control) sets.  Feel free to admire us, too.  Not that most of the guys back there have great abs or anything, but seriously.

1 Cor 12: 15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body. 21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

We have many gifts, but God made us for a single purpose: to bring him glory.  My gifts are music and writing, and I love that God uses that to bring him glory, when I don’t see it.  I read writings and play music by others and glorify God through them.  But if we were all musical and writing, who the heck would do the rest of it?  What about the farmers that grow our food, the teachers that teach the children of tomorrow, the barbers, the accountants, the doctors, the mathematicians, the politicians (yes, we even need them), and all of the rest?  Seriously, there are more jobs out there than probably ever.  Who knew half a century ago there would be computer tech people and help desks and computer software designers, and developing GPSes for people who get lost a lot like me or for straight lines to be made in every field?  But we need them, too.  Now, I can wish that could make a bunch of perfect lattes in speedy quick time or was good at math, but honestly, I can’t.  That’s what Taylor the Latte Boy and the calculator on my phone are for (and thus, the guy that put the calculator on my phone, thank you!).  We need each other. And together, though we each are very different, we make a beautiful song.

Anna 🙂