i am grateful for sermons preached by pastors in suits and ties heard by congregants sitting in dresses in pews. i am grateful for sister friends who preach about hearing God’s voice with no shoes on while i listen from my spot on the floor. i am grateful for dread locks and the men and women who don them as they share what God is doing in their lives, what He desires to do in our lives, and as they lead us in worshiping the Only One deserving of worship. i am grateful for people who speak spanish and english and french and turkish and german and the God who hears and understands and loves them all.
just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. for we were all baptized by one spirit so as to form one body – whether jews or gentiles, slave or free – and we were all given the one spirit to drink. even so the body is not made up of one part but of many. – 1 corinthians 12:12-14
i am grateful for hands and feet. for toes and fingers. i am grateful for chins and elbows and wrists and knees. i am grateful for heads and hearts. for eyes and ears. i am grateful for this body and my place in it.
the eye cannot say to the hand, “i don’t need you!” and the head cannot say to the feet, “i don’t need you!” on the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor… – 1 corinthians 12:21-23
i am grateful for communion. for coming together as a body of believers to remember a God that came to serve us. to remember a God that came to give his life for us. i am grateful for grape juice in little plastic cups and wine in big goblets. i am grateful for hunks of bread and small wafers. i am grateful for passing plates and for getting up to receive. i am grateful for prayers prayed. i am grateful for forgiveness received. i am grateful for community.
God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. if one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. – 1 corinthians 12:24-26
i am grateful for jeans and flip flops, for slacks and dress shoes, for skirts and dresses and shorts and t-shirts. i am grateful for guitars and banjos and drums and pianos and organs, for hymns, and not-hymns. for hand raisers, swayers, and stand-stillers. i am grateful for those who have to step out into the aisle when they praise because they need their space to commune with their Lord. i am grateful for those who worship in the stillness and quietness of their hearts and minds. i am grateful for the God who hears and sees and understands and loves them all.
now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. and God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.. and yet i will show you the most excellent way. – 1 corinthians 12:27-28, 31
i am grateful to be part of this body and to get to know God as he reveals himself through his children.