‘He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.’ (Ephesians 4:16)
We encourage one another to step into all that we are called to be, so that the world may ‘taste and see that the Lord is good. ‘ (Psalm 34:8). Yet, this is not all. In being all we are called to be, in responding to the voice of the Father, we are also encouraging one another in the Body to step into our identity as Beloved Sons and Daughters. We were born into the family of Christ, and it takes family to help us grow to maturity.
This is a story of one part of the Body, blessing another part of the Body through listening, obeying, and going. It’s a story of taking the time to stop for another, in love. It shows God’s goodness, as expressed through the local family of Christ.
We used to host regular nights in our home. On these nights, we invited God to come, and we responded to His heart. It was a safe environment for those that had encountered Jesus on the streets through my own, and other believer’s daily life. The evenings were for people to explore what, or rather, who, they had encountered through us. Some were new Christians, others were Christians from traditional environments, hungering for more, and still others were not yet Christians but wanted to know more.
One of our group was a beautiful woman who was exploring her new Christian life. She had been walking in miraculous synchronicity with the Father and was on a rapid journey of discovery. With a desire to step fully into who she was in Christ, she wanted to hear, obey, and respond to Him throughout her day.
It was during this rapid period of growth, her uncle (special and dear to her) died. In her grief, and unbeknownst to us, she wondered, ‘am I good enough?’
We have all been there. While intellectually understanding we can never be ‘good enough,’ the doubts about ‘who’ we are can arise, and a sense of striving can take root. The simple truth that ‘we are His Beloved’ erodes. Doubt brings a sense of striving and performance for acceptance. This can be especially so when we are vulnerable in times of grief and loss.
At this time, I saw another friend from our group in our local shopping village. On saying ‘hello,’ she advised me she was heading off to buy this first friend a bunch of flowers. It was a ‘God assignment’ and she was busy, off to do as called. Laughing, I wished her well.
The following day, we found out at group that this second friend had visited four florists. She knew she was to buy the first friend a bunch of pink roses, but it took four florists to find just the right shade of pink!
On finding them, she had dropped them off, knocking on the door and giving them to the first friend, who then recounted that the roses were the exact shade of pink, a bluey-pink, that she had just days before cast upon her uncle’s casket.
It was also the exact shade of pink in a rainbow she had seen the morning after she stepped out for the very first time, doing as God had bid her do.
As she told the story, I could feel God’s love for her, so I said,
‘What do you think God was trying to say to you through these roses being just the right shade of pink?’
She looked at me and said without hesitation,
‘He loves me!’
And so she realised she was truly loved – just because. She understood from that gift of pink roses, of a specific shade, that God loved her. She did not need to be good enough.’ He loved her ‘just because.’ In that one gift she knew, He saw her, He knew her, and He delighted in her.
So I say,
‘Body of Christ, please stand up!’
When we reach out to one another in love.
When we reach out to the world in love.
When we respond to the Father;’s heart and do as He bids (even without truly understanding why), I believe that the world truly does taste, and see that,
God IS Good!
John 13:34-35 says:
‘A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.’
Our love for one another is a witness to the world. As we continue to encourage and love each other (as a verb, as an action), then the world tastes and sees love in action. It is the Body of Christ truly alive and growing as reflected in the Ephesians scripture quoted above. The Body of Christ, moving in Love is a desirable and attractive thing indeed, and it will draw pre-Believers.
© Beth Kennedy 2022