A couple of weeks ago, church staff came together to have a planning meeting. We met off-site at a different location, and we had the whole day to look at the next upcoming year.
As a church, we really have a heart for discipleship. We want our folks to have the tools to minister help, hope, and healing to the world around them. Some of our discussion for the day centered around exactly that: discipleship.
What does it mean to be a disciple? What does that look like? What does that mean for us, as leadership? How do we help cultivate that?
The awesome thing about the body of Christ is that no one can do it alone. We need each other to be effective. We need each other, in community at church and in everyday life.
As I sat in the meeting and we discussed what it meant to each of us individually to be a disciple, I thought about what an immense responsibility and blessing it is to be a daughter of the King. As I was pondered the weight of discipleship, the Lord reminded me of 1 Corinthians 12:12-13.
I love the way this passage reads in the Message version. "You can easily enough see how this kind of thing works by looking no further than your own body. Your body has many parts—limbs, organs, cells—but no matter how many parts you can name, you’re still one body. It’s exactly the same with Christ. By means of his one Spirit, we all said good-bye to our partial and piecemeal lives. We each used to independently call our own shots, but then we entered into a large and integrated life in which he has the final say in everything. (This is what we proclaimed in word and action when we were baptized.) Each of us is now a part of his resurrection body, refreshed and sustained at one fountain—his Spirit—where we all come to drink. The old labels we once used to identify ourselves—labels like Jew or Greek, slave or free—are no longer useful. We need something larger, more comprehensive."
We're all part of the same body, and in the concept of discipleship, that's such a refreshing thing to hear. While each of us absolutely have a responsibility to share our hearts and faith with others, it's not just me.
The Holy Spirit takes the pressure off--we instead of me. The heart of the church universal is to step into the we, by partnering with the Holy Spirit.
Do you know what a relief that is? We instead of just me. The body of Christ is meant to partner together, in step with the Holy Spirit to minister to the world around us.
So take a breath. Let the truth of Matthew 11:30 wash over you. "For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." (NIV).
Partnering with the Holy Spirit means that we can trust His timing. As we let go of our own agendas and step into the "we", our agendas become aligned with the desires of the Holy Spirit!