Thursday December 12, 2013
Did the reading for today seem to be a little complex? Why are we talking about religious festivals and new moon celebrations? I thought we were moving toward Christmas!
We are moving toward the glorious celebration of the birth of Jesus. But along the way we need to acknowledge that we live in a very unique world. It seems that many of the issues have not changed through the generations. People are still worshiping unusual objects and seasons. The Apostle Paul describes them as a “shadow” of things to come in Christ Jesus.
Apparently there were lots of shadows in Paul’s day! People in the area were being tricked into false belief. Some things seem to stay the same generation after generation. We find people today walking in the shadow of faith all the time. They take up unique rituals. They might even separate themselves from the typical flow of the human experience. Sometimes they make predictions about the future in an attempt to claim some kind of special knowledge or power.
But the real power arrives when we are connected to Jesus. Paul refers to Jesus in verse 19 as the Head. When we are connected to the Head we can be the Body of Christ that is whole and healthy with a focus on growth and possibility. Without that connection…we will miss the most joyous experience of life.
The image of the Body of Christ actually has three different meanings in the Christian faith. First there is the actual physical human body that sustained Jesus during his life on earth. Then there is the New Testament teaching that the Body of Christ is the church with each member making the body healthy and strong. Third, we think about the Body of Christ when we lift and break the loaf in preparation for sharing the Lord’s Supper. All three images are essential to the fullness of our faith.
I thought it was interesting that in this passage Paul uses physical language of ligament and sinew to describe the spiritual body that we call the church. We are linked to one another and made stronger in the church through the connecting tissue of our individual faith.
Where do you connect? Is it through occasional worship? Or maybe you are linked through a small group? Or do you serve and share your life as a vital part of the Body of Christ?
Memory Verse Of The Week:
Colossians 2:6-7 NIV
“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.”
Missional Prayer Focus For Today:
Please pray for the Christmas mission ministry of Warren Village in Denver as they continue to impact the lives of single parent families with a safe and fulfilling atmosphere of education and hope.
Note: Be sure to join us tonight for a light meal and a group conversation about our Advent study from 5:30 to 7:00 in the Fellowship Hall. Bring your bible, your questions, and an appetite as we dig a bit deeper and share our experience of Waiting On The Word!