“Wack!” I felt the baseball hit me in eye and the next thing I knew, I was lying on the ground. The coach had chosen me to be the starting pitcher that night and was helping me warm up before the game. He threw the ball back after one of my pitches, and it skipped off the top of my glove and hit me in the face. As I came to, my eye hurt, but so did the rest of my head. And it wasn’t just my head, my whole body felt it in some way, too! Why? Because God designed our bodies so that when they get hurt in one place, the rest of the body is affected, as well.
This event reminds me of something the Apostle Paul wrote. He was comparing the relationships that exist between Christians to the relationships that exist between parts of the human body.
“And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored,
All the members rejoice with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.”[i]
This means that if one of believer is suffering in some way, the whole body of believers is affected. The opposite is true, as well. If one member is honored in some way, all believers should rejoice with that member.
The above is true in principle, but how does it play out in your life? When one of your fellow believers is hurting, do you feel it, too? It is easy sometimes to hear of someone who has come under adversity and think, “Oh, that is too bad; I’ll pray for you,” but walk away and forget about the person’s situation. Or, when a fellow believer is honored in some way, you might become envious rather than joyful for what is happening. God wants us to be so intertwined in love for one another, that we feel each other’s pains and joys.
How can this happen? By developing relationships with other Christians in the context of a Christ-like love. When you do this, you will gain the heart of Christ for His people and experience a supernatural compassion. This compassion will lead you to put yourself in their shoes and walk with them as best you can. Then you will be able to “rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.”[ii]
I sat on the bench for the game that night as my body began to recover. After several days, my black eye went away and I recovered just fine. But only because the rest of the body God gave me did its work to take care of the injured part. Will you love your brothers and sisters in Christ to help take of them when they are wounded in some way? If you are willing, God may use you to bring the healing that person needs!
God of all compassion, help me to be sensitive to the needs of
my brothers and sisters in Christ around me.
May I love them with a love that flows from You. May I
be someone who helps brings healing and restoration when they need it.
In Jesus’ name, amen.
[i] 1 Corinthians 12:26, 27 New King James Version
[ii] See Romans 12:15