Christian Living

Spiritual Life

You Matter

Jill Dube - Partner Services Representative

Can you imagine Eye telling Hand, “Get lost; I don’t need you?” (1 Corinthians 12:21 msg)

I had to smile as I read Paul’s words above. I’ve never told my hands to “get lost”; however, I have told them to “walk.” Paul is comparing spiritual gifts with our body and my easily entertained imagination took me straight down memory lane. Yes. My friend and I regularly walked down the school halls... on our hands—a skill we mastered with lots of practice in the streets, on the sidewalk, and in the grocery store aisles. It was great! Now, you would not see me walking into the bank on my hands today, however, it’s not uncommon for me to open a package with my teeth, pick up a sock with my foot, or drive with my knee. Not the ideal situation, but it works in a pinch! I certainly know my limits though. I won't be sticking a Krispy Kreme in my eye or an ear pod in my nose. And although I’ve wondered at times if it has a mind of its own, I will not depend on my stomach to do my thinking.

It has never occurred to me to let my hands really take over for my feet, or for my knees to take the wheel. Never once did I compare my eye with my mouth and find one of them lacking. There is no comparison. Can you imagine if, one day, our mouth refused to chew and swallow because, after comparing itself with the eyes, decided it was tired of tasting the food and wanted to see it? Impossible, we would say! We know that the mouth does not exist for itself. Its function is to benefit the entire body.

God designed our bodies as a model for understanding our lives together as a church: every part dependent on every other part. If one part hurts, every other part is involved in the hurt, and in the healing. If one-part flourishes, every other part enters exuberance. (v.25, 26)

I didn’t understand that at first. I was trapped in the deception of comparing myself to others. I believed I needed to be something different. I didn’t believe my part mattered, therefore, withheld it from the other members. When God gives someone the gift of hospitality, but they withhold it from the body because they want the gift of prophecy, then who is going to invite strangers into their homes, and feed and clothe them? When one member refuses to act, the whole body suffers.

In his book The Body of Christ, the Reality Watchman Nee explains how every member of Christ’s body has a significant function assigned by God: “No matter how tiny that function is, no one else can substitute it. Not even the greatest function in the body can stand in for the smallest one, none can take the place for the other. You cannot be a substitute for me, nor can I be a substitute for you. Oh, if we could see this we would leap for joy!”1

God has given us all gifts and functions in His body where there’s only completion—not competition. Isn’t that something to “leap for joy” over? I long for us to believe God and accept our place in the body of Christ because v. 27 tells us, You are Christ’s body—that's who you are! You must never forget this. it’s not who we are, but whose we are that matters.


1 The Body of Christ, a Reality by Watchman Nee, ©2014, pp. 57 – 58.

Scripture is quoted from  THE MESSAGE, copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson. Used by permission of NavPress. All rights reserved. Represented by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

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