Friday, August 9, 2013

A cord of three strands...

On Tuesday Pastor Mike and I took the Kelly family to Chicago to start the next stage in their journey as missionaries in Kenya. On the way home Mike and I were talking (I should say I did a lot of talking with Pastor Mike trying to get in a word here and there – sorry brother, I’ll listen more next time J) and I shared the one thing I miss about serving in the military. A sense of close camaraderie. I was stationed aboard a submarine with 89 other men. At any given time there would be 30 men operating the sub and another 30 – 50 men performing maintenance. The remaining crew would be sleeping, eating, doing laundry, all the little things everyone does every day. If there was an emergency like a fire or flooding everyone responded. We all had a specific role and we all relied on each person to perform their role. We all depended on one another for our safety every minute of every day while we were at sea. If even one of us made a mistake it could have disastrous consequences for the ship and the crew and we all knew it. There were several occasions when we could have found ourselves in the deep end (pun intended) either through a mistake someone made or just circumstances if we hadn’t all pulled together and done our parts to the best of our ability. We all knew if one goes, we all go. There were a lot of things I really didn’t enjoy about being in the Navy but I loved the sense of shared purpose and commitment to a group with a common goal – the camaraderie. I think this is exactly the level of commitment God wants between all Christians, all the time. As children of the on true King we all have a role to play.

“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.”                                                                                        1 Corinthians 12:4-6

I believe God has made us to be reliant. Reliant on him and reliant on each other. We need each other to become the people God has called us to be.

“Just as iron sharpens iron so one person sharpens another.”

                                                                                                                                Proverbs 27:17

We need each other to be effective in showing Christ to the world.

“A new commandment I give to you; that you love one another – just as I have loved you that you also love on another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples – if you have lover for one another.”

We need each other to overcome the obstacles in our lives.

“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”                                                                                                                Ecclesiastes 4:12

We need to stand together, bound by a common purpose, committed to a common goal, unwilling to leave anyone behind. We all have a part to play. The Kellys have been called to Kenya, the Bakers have been called to China, the Piantines have been called to the disabled, the LeMieuxs have been called to reach bikers and the list goes on. We are not all called to go but we are all called to play a part. Some may be called to pray, others to encourage. Some may be called to coordinate and administer, others to simply work. No part is greater or lesser than any other because without any one part, we all fail. 

This is really what missions and evangelism is all about. A group of committed people, called and equipped by God, doing their part to ensure no one is left behind. We commit, God multiplies and the world is changed.

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