“But in fact, God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.”
1 Corinthians 12:18
In 1 Corinthians 12, the apostle Paul describes the church, the entire population of believers in Christ, as a body. It has become a pretty common term – the Body of Christ. He says that every believer in Christ is a part of the body. Every part has its own specific job. The eyes are for seeing, the feet for walking, the mouth for eating, and so on.
Every believer has a different job to do. God has designed and prepared each of us in such a way that we each have a unique ability to build the Kingdom of God in a way that no one else can. Often we see charismatic preachers and evangelists or inspirational missionaries and we want to be like them, do what they do. We wish and we wonder why God didn’t give us that gift for public speaking, we wonder what’s wrong with us that we didn’t sell everything and move to Africa for the sake of the gospel. We end up comparing ourselves, and in turn we end up doubting our own gifts.
If a hand compared itself to an eye, it might feel less gifted or useful because the eye can see and the hand cannot. At the same time, the eye would compare itself to the hand and feel inadequate because it has no ability to touch, to hold, to write, or any of the other things the hand can do. Comparison is a losing game. Without either of these things, a body would be disabled, significantly handicapped. Needless to say, losing an eye or a hand, let alone both, would be a very difficult thing. They’re both so vital to most of our everyday lives. They’re completely different but equally valuable.
The same is true for us. So don’t look around at other peoples’ talents and wish they were yours. Don’t wonder why God didn’t give you such and such gift or such and such ability. God made you exactly the way you are for a reason. God gave you the experiences, relationships, and abilities that you have for a reason. You are a vital part of the body of Christ, the living, breathing, presence of God on earth. God has placed you exactly where he wants you to be. So stop looking around to see what part everyone else is, look to see what yours is and work diligently for the Kingdom of God where he has placed you in all wisdom and understanding.
I know that you have a plan and a purpose for me. I know that you’ve made me as I am and placed me where I am for the glory of your Kingdom. I pray that I would not be tempted to compare and devalue my own part in your plan, but to work diligently where you have placed me.
In Jesus’ Name,