we are one.
"For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us." Romans 12:4-6a
I remember one day in my Confirmation prep class in the 11th grade. Yes, I had to wait all the way until 11th grade to be Confirmed at my parish! We sat on the floor, in a circle and Sister held a ball of yarn. She told us each to name a body part and then throw the yarn to the next person; she started with cheeks. I remember waiting for my turn and trying to think of an 'interesting' part of the body. I ended up picking the eyebrows. Not sure why, but then, I went ahead a threw the yarn to the next person. When we were all finished, it looked like a mess of yarn and Sister told us to drop the yarn on the count of three. 1. 2. 3...
There we just saw a bunch of yarn on the floor. Sister smiled and started rolling the yarn in her hand, since she had the beginning piece. She then explained to us that we are each a unique part of the body and Christ is the head. We all have different roles, but we are all connected in Christ. We all have different gifts, but each member is an important part of the body.
On January 20, 2019, I had the opportunity of hosting a craft fundraiser for my good friend, Andrea. She is a nursing student, who is preparing to go on a medical mission trip to Peru. We picked a beautiful mason jar string art. As I kept stringing through the nails, I was reminded of the story from my Confirmation class. We are all connected, like the string. We are all one. We are all one community.
One of the tips I gave to the women when doing string art was to hold the string tightly because if we let go, then the string would fall apart. Trust me, I made this mistake many times doing string art. However, we need to be reminded to always hold on tightly to Christ. And yes, if we let go, then we fall apart. Through out suffering and hardships, we must remain faithful to Jesus and cling to Him. In that trust, He is able to work through us.
The second part of the Romans' bible verse says, "We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us." Though we are all part of one body, we are all different. How beautiful is it that we are all unique! Even looking at the finished crafts, each woman had a personal and unique craft. But all beautiful. So I want to note, just because we are all different, that does not mean be are in competition. We are one community. Each one has their own gifts and graces; and, because we are one community, we rejoice and share in each others' gifts. Envy is from the evil one and so is competition. What would the world be like if everyone shared in each others' gifts, instead of being envious of them? How would it be if everyone supported each other by building each other up, instead of tearing each other down?
Let's start small! Find a friend. Tell her/him what amazing gifts they have. And let them know how much you appreciate their gifts.
Andrea, if you are reading this... your compassion and heart is inspiring. It's because of your compassion that will make you become a great nurse. And of course, all your studying! I am so happy that I could share in your gifts because you do things that I cannot!
God is the head and we are the body. Whether you are a finger or an eyebrow, you are an important member of the body. Remember that!