27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.
1 Cor. 12:27
The Perfect Body
For a society that is quite preoccupied with our bodies, we seem to know little about our true body. From advertising images to social media, marketing campaigns always show us images of perfect looking bodies along side every product. Diet programs and pills, abound promising to help us achieve a perfect shape. But, there is one perfect body few seem to be aware of – the Body of Christ.
If you’re a believer in Jesus Christ, you’re a part of His body, but what does that mean to Christian churches that concentrate almost all of their time and ministry on the individual’s relationship with Jesus? Don’t get me wrong. Our individual life in Christ is important, but not at the expense of our corporate life. We are His body. Every believer is a member of the one body, and every member is essential. If the Body of Christ (churches) is to function at maximum impact in our world, we must realize there are no optional members.
How Lent Can Help
Churches that observe Lent, do well at building the Body of Christ when they offer Lenten services at various times throughout the season; services like Ash Wednesday, weekly devotionals, and Holy Week services like Tenebrae, Maundy Thursday, and Good Friday. While Lent offers us a time to reconnect with Jesus in an intensely personal way through prayer, fasting, and works of mercy, it is at the same time a journey we take together.
The journey to holiness is a long and winding road, and it can be a very lonely road if we have no companions. Of course, we always have the Holy Spirit so we’re never really alone, but what a joy it is to sense that we are a part of something much bigger than ourselves, that we’re a part of a perfect body. Church Lenten services and devotional times help us realize our place in the Body.
We’re Stronger Together
When we fast together, we are stronger. When we pray together, God inhabits our prayers with a special presence. If your church doesn’t offer any such services during Lent, ask your Pastor about it. Perhaps he wasn’t taught that such services are beneficial. I know the church in which I serve did not always observe Lent. Not all denominations observe Lent, but many that haven’t in the past, are waking up to its value in our faith journey.
Regardless of whether your church observes Lent or not, you have the privilege of observing it individually. But, as you do, remember that you’re a part of a greater body, a perfect body. Jesus Christ has offered all who believe in Him to become a part of His body, and when you realize what you’re a part of – then realize you’ve been raised from the ashes.
Grace & Peace for a Holy Lent,
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.”