Brothers and sisters, dear friends!
With all my heart I pray for the blessing and protection of our Lord over the entire Philadelphia church, and over all of you. Even in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic, let us continue to be fully confident in the Lord, for we have the promise that “all things work together for the good of those who love God.”
In describing the Church, a commonly used analogy is that of a body. The Head is our Lord Jesus Christ and the believers are parts of the body. This analogy is relatively easy to understand but is often viewed too superficially. From it, we must understand the importance, the place and the purpose of every believer in the Church. A complete, healthy body has no missing parts and no extra parts. Each part is placed in a very particular place, for a well determined purpose and is very useful to the body. No body part can live alone, separated from the other parts of the body. A body part that is disconnected from the other parts, does not receive life and power from the body, nor can it contribute to the life of the body.
The same is true with us, the believers! The Apostle Paul writes to the Ephesians that the body must be “fit together perfectly”, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.
For the first time in the history of the Church, believers all over the world, cannot gather together in their houses of worship. In these unprecedented times, each of us must examine ourselves, whether we are indeed bound and perfectly fitted together, like the body parts in a living and healthy body. This level of co-dependence is not achieved by registering as a member or through programs, projects or organizations. The close bond that is desired in the Church is holy love, after Jesus’s example and relentless, selfless service. This is the responsibility, but also the great need of each particular member.
During this time of physical distancing, I invite all of you to a self-examination of your spiritual life, as a measure of your integration into the Body of Christ – the Church.
Am I a useful part into the Body of Christ? Am I closely tied and connected to the other body parts? What is my contribution to the growth of the Church, in love? These are just a few questions for which all of us must have answers.
“He 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 (NLT)