My youngest son was 6 years old. He was new to both t-ball, the idea of playing on a team, and working under a coach. The rest of the other little boys seemed to be in the same boat. Doing our duty as parents, we sat on the bleachers under the blazing sun, watching the melee that always broke out whenever a ball was hit into the field. Something was definitely amiss. No child was listening to the coach.
a disorganized mess
Like a swarm of bees, the kids in the outfield rushed together, all in hopes of catching the ball. They tripped over each other in their haste to cross the field. That didn’t count the players who were distracted watching the clouds in the sky or the bugs in the dirt. It was a disorganized mess. Concepts of the game, like having positions and certain responsibilities, were unknown to them. Working as a team was something that had to be ground into them for the common good.
many parts….one body
The little boys learning to play t-ball had trouble comprehending the phrase “many parts form one body”. For just as the body is one and yet has many parts, and all the parts, though many, form [only] one body, so it is with Christ (I Corinthians 12:12, Amplified Version). Just like little boys on that t-ball team, the early Christian church also had to learn their positions, their giftings and how they could each contribute to the whole.
who is on the team
The Coach for the church is the Holy Spirit. He has made wonderful and powerful plans. In His team, it doesn’t matter one’s background, social standing, or their confidence. The only qualification for membership in God’s team is that a person has repented of their sin and confessed Jesus Christ as their only Savior. The blood of Christ has even given us team uniforms: the righteousness of Christ. The Holy Spirit is the One who bestows on us the gifting and training to play our positions on the team. No member is exempt from playing.
god’s plan for the team
The church has never been intended to be a picture of those little 6 year olds running willy-nilly over the playing field, not understanding their positions, their giftings or the rules of the game. Read I Corinthians 12:1-12 to get a glimpse of God’s plan for His team.
serving on the team
How does one discover their position and gift(s) for serving on the team? Ask the Holy Spirit; after all, He is our Coach. Read deeply the Word of God, seek wise counsel and the prayers of other believers. It is vital to have a willing spirit to serve wherever God leads you.
willing to serve
The road to learning to serve can be rather bumpy and humbling. I have made many mistakes learning both what my spiritual gifts are and what they are not. All God has asks is for us to be obedient and willing to serve.
start listening to the coach
Nothing is better than openly serving on His team. Who knows what adventures He will lead you to? But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit [the spiritual illumination and the enabling of the Holy Spirit] for the common good. So, stop running all over the field and start listening to the Coach!