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Philippians 1: 27

Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ; . . . standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.

I find this an interesting passage from Paul’s letter written from prison to the faithful in Philippi. Can you imagine a minister writing this today? It is a bit harder to imagine because the situation is different. Perhaps if you started a church in a foreign place you might write such a thought. I think there is another difference also. I believe today we pastors, teachers and evangelists speak to audiences of one. We attempt to teach each person who he or she should endeavor to be rather than speaking to the body corporately. It truly makes me wonder how much of a body we honestly are.

A body is more than a collection of individual parts. While a body is a union of many parts all of those constituent parts work together to perform. Can we say that a body is like a machine? Each of the parts have their individual function but all of those functions are for the furthering of a greater purpose which is the greater goal. Different components of our cars do different functions but it is in their collective that a car serves its greater function. This is what Paul was speaking to.

Paul wasn’t preaching to each member individually. He wrote to the body. He wanted to them to stand in unison with one goal, one mind and one purpose. Do you ever wonder what our greater purpose is or where you may fit in to the body? This is why ministers try to get you to partner with them. Partnership with each other is much, much more than financial support. It is a sincere effort to gather all of our separate parts together so that together we can fulfill our greater purpose. Our individualism sometimes causes us to be separate and even breeds loneliness. While we honor the individual it is also true we are most fulfilled and satisfied in togetherness.

I am not asking you, today, to do anything specific. Perhaps today’s devotion causes you to think, maybe it stimulates a prayer. I think it is important, though, that we see ourselves as part of a group; that we understand that our strength is not only in our relationship with our God but also in our unity with each other. God didn’t call just you. He didn’t call just me. He called us and we stand together as the Body of Christ.

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