This week we were ministering at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, CA. During our time here, there was a lot of refreshment that came from the 70+ degree weather, clear skies every day, and a couple of full days off that we were able to enjoy there. But we've also been able to meet a number of people on and off base that the Lord has used to pour into us and bring refreshment through.
We played a number of concerts on base, serving our contacts in reaching out to some of the airmen and their families. After a couple of those concerts, there were a few airmen that came up to us afterward and started chatting with us. One of them, Terrell, was really intentional to encourage us and edify us as ministers that had just poured out into our audience. He's also a phenomenal guitarist - and really humble too. Angus and I began talking to him about guitars and he started showing us some of the stuff he could do. With our jaws dropped, we marvelled at his skill and I was humbled by the realization of how much time and practice it would take to get to the level he's at. He began to teach us some of what he knows and even offered to send us materials that have helped him - definitely recognizing that everything he'd accomplished could be attained by anyone else.
A couple of days later, we saw him again after a concert and this time he asked us to teach him something (as if we had something to teach him that he didn't already know!). And after we had doubted our abilities and wondered why he wasn't the one travelling for a year playing in a CTI band, he said something that stuck out to me and has refined my outlook. He said "everyone's got something to teach, and everyone's got something to learn". And it turned out that there actually were areas where my strengths lie, and his don't.
God took that opportunity to remind me of the picture Paul paints about the Church being like one body with many parts. In 1 Corinthians 12:12-31, he talks about the human body having many parts, all making up one whole body (v.12). He also writes:
Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. If the foot says, "I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand," that does not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear says, "I am not part of the body because I am not an eye," would that make it any less a part of the body? If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything?...The eye can never say to the hand, "I don't need you." The head can't say to the feet, "I don't need you." (v.14-17,21)
I needed this reminder from the Lord of my place in ministry. I'm not called to do everything, and I'm definitely not called to do nothing. So it is with the entire Body of Christ. In another one of his letters, Paul tells the church in Ephesus:
[Christ] makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love. (Ephesians 4:16)
Let's remember to be encouraging each other, only doing things to build each other up, edify the Church, and help each other grow as vital parts of the Body, remembering that it is Christ who holds us all together.