Sunday, September 12, 2010

 

Sunday Reflection: Does the church need me?


Last Sunday, in the comments section, I answered my own post's question about whether or not we need the church, in part with this:

I know that I am not strong enough or good enough to walk the path of Christianity, or even close to it, on my own. I need to be constantly challenged and encouraged (two different but essential things) in my faith, or it fades.... The Church does not need me, particularly, but I do need it. I need it not because of any one strength or ultimate truth (every church is flawed), but because of my own failings and weaknesses.

In response to that, I got a challenging and true email from an esteemed Razorite, who suggested this (in part):

As many teenagers do, I went through quite the rebellious period in high school. At one point, I decided I was going to stop going to church, which I had done with my family every Sunday my entire life. My parents were none-too-thrilled by this pronouncement and an argument ensued. I tried to say that I could believe and worship as I wished and that the church didn't need me.

My dad pointed me to 1 corinthians and asked me to read a few sections. He then asked if I believed in what I had just read. I responded affirmatively. He explained what I had just read-- in Paul's letters to the Corinthians, he frequently referred to the Church as "a body." In 1 Corinthians 12:15-22, Paul addresses this very issue-- does the Church need me?-- saying, "But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased. And if they were all one member, where would the body be? But now indeed there are members, yet one body. And the eye cannot say to the hand, 'I have no need of you'; nor again the head to the feet, 'I have no need of you.' No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary."

I think this works two ways. One, there is no part of the body (the Church) that can say to what it perceives as the least among them that a member is not needed or welcome. all are both; and two, that the church does need you... and my dad... and even me, to be whole.

In strict application to my own life, that message is bolstering, encouraging and affirming-- even when I am feeling like a wayward Christian or even just feeling lazy in my faith and don't want to go to church, I know that the church needs me to be whole.


To which I just say "Amen."

Comments:
That seems like a perfect response. I love Sunday Reflection. Do not replace it with cat photos.
 
But Pickles can cause a true religious experience - I bet a deity or three was mentioned when the ankle snapped!

Lee
 
Lee--

It's Minnesota, so I just yelled at Thor. Well, him and Pickles.
 
In my experience, Thor does not care for snapped ankles, as his only interests are mead, thunder, mead, hitting things with his mighty hammer Mjollnir, and more mead.

More aptly, you should have cursed the name of Lokí, to whom all cats are dedicated, as they are all fey and trickster-like.
 
Lane, thank you for the tip. And I hereby curse the name of Loki.
 
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