This week we spoke about the power and importance of fellowship. I gave the example of how when one part of the body hurts, no matter how small, the how body suffers. The scripture was Philippians 1:27-30 where Paul writes to the Philippians from prison imploring them to be in a joyful communion one with another.
I was playing a tennis tournament a few weeks ago and I was having a good tournament. I had just beaten the top seed of the tournament and I was starting to feel good about my chances in the tournament. If you haven’t already noticed, humility is one of my strengths. Anyways, I was playing my next match and had just won the first set. In tennis, you have to win 2 out 3 sets to win the match. I was halfway home. I was playing great, winning against a guy that was a former All-American at Emory and won a national championship with them. I was feeling good. Then, tragedy struck. If you have every played a sport or watched sports, you know how horrible a major injury can be. It was gruesome. Out of nowhere, in the middle of a point I was lunging for a shot and hurt… my … toe. I bet some of you were expecting me to talk about breaking an ankle or tearing a ligament or my shoulder dislocating… Some of you may even laugh at me complaining about a hurt toe, and you are right, that is kind of a silly excuse. It wasn’t even a major toe, it was the middle toe. Yes, the toenail turned black and blue and my toe is still swollen, but a toe injury? You are probably thinking, did you let a toe injury affect your game?
The answer is yes. My toe hurt so bad that I went on to lose the match.
My toe that day taught me the importance of what Paul was talking about in Philippians. Through my tragic toe injury, I learned the importance of community. Even when one, very small, part of my body was hurting, the whole body suffered.
That’s what Paul was saying, he wants the least and the greatest of us to be in such a union, that we feel every bump and bruise in the body. He wants us to celebrate together and he wants us to walk through tough times together.
Wherever your community is, know that you are an important part of that body and even better, as children of God, we are all part of the same great body.