Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Community News 1/9/18

Day 2 of Week 1  1 Corinthians 12; Romans 12:3 - 12; Ephesians 4:11 - 16


In the beginning God … created …

With the sheer force of a tidal wave God’s voice spoke. With the sound of a cataclysmic bomb God’s works were done. With a joyful exclamation mark, God pronounced that everything he created was “good.” Have you ev er wondered what would motivate our God to use his “supernatural abilities” to act?

Consider for a moment that our God is not just One, but Three. He is a community. He is in friendship. He is Love. His communal enjoyment within himself motivates him to ex tend joy beyond his borders into making all that we know and love in creation. A desire for community and friendship is woven into the very fabric of the world because we have a relational God.

Consider in addition how interactive Adam and Eve’s language i s before they sinned. Take a look for yourself. Everything is spoken in terms of “we.” After Eve and Adam fell into sin, the language changes to “I, and me.” The fall of human kind broke our sense of community with God and each other. It severed friendship s, and imprisoned us from ever really tasting the fullness of self - less love.

Whereas Christ lives, breathes, comes, dies, rises, ascends, leads, and intercedes over all within community, we tend to isolate, individualize, and shape all we know through a lens of selfish narcissism — “I and me” are at the center of our universe. Christ’s life, truth, and power, however are pressed out onto the earth in a community shape, and many times we just miss it because his image is “one to another.”

This impacts how we think of the “Spiritual Gifts” and their use and purpose. We tend to read 1 Corinthians 11 - 14 and think about spiritual gifts as supernatural abilities. Individual. On the other hand, Paul has a Trinitarian understanding of the gifts, or as we believe the y are more properly translated, the “Spiritual Ministries.” The works he speaks of are collective. Community. We.

Our spiritual “gifts” are creative works, and responses to God’s love, and they will flow from how we view ourselves within God’s Trinitarian world. If we view ourselves in the pride of individualism, our gifts will be seen as superpowers. If we find ourselves “in Christ” — with the Father, by the power of the Holy Spirit — our motivation for our work will take on a different shape. It will change e verything!

Adapted From: Spiritual Gifts - You Version