Awhile back I worked as an internal Investigator. My position was at a district level, an extensive area made up of numerous locations. Beyond my other investigative responsibilities, my job consisted of conducting numerous quarterly audits, an implemented measure to ensure everyone was performing on the proper foundation.
The branches making up the company consisted of the Operations Department, the Human Resource Department, and the Loss Prevention Department. This was the Triad, our own version of the Trinity. They were to work together, although not under each other. Each department would submit to the other’s area of expertise and responsibility as they first submitted to their head.
Furthermore, each branch had its own unique set of sub-goals entrusted to it, along with its own managerial hierarchy. This was detrimental in achieving the company’s goal and an umbrella for those within.
For instance, within my department I had my own District Manager, Regional Manager, and Vice President. What I did could result in a loss of large bonuses, amongst other perks. Jobs were at stake that could ripple up the chain of command. Having my own managerial umbrella was a safety measure to ensure I could perform my duties without being hindered by the others. As human nature can be, it kept personal interest and partial vision in check . . . and it worked the same for them.
Due to the nature of my job I was not responsible for personally relating to every employee at a local level and their specific set of challenges. Considering the vast area I was responsible for time restraints didn’t allow such luxuries, and to attempt to do so would render me ineffective. It was the responsibility of each location’s managerial staff to deal with the challenges arising from the ground. Furthermore, I had challenges of my own.
Why am I bringing this up?
For some time now I’ve been noticing a trend in Christianity. Don’t preach, don’t teach, just tell me a good story that I can relate to. Sympathize with me! Better yet, empathize.
Human Resources is a necessary department. I do believe I get it. At times I’ve felt the same way too. We all want someone who can relate to our challenges and personal pain. Even though the finer details may not perfectly match, at a deeper level I feel confident to say many of us, if not all, can relate. By digging deeper we can all find common ground.
Although we mustn’t stop short of the goal and continue to dig until we strike oil; to be found in the heart of God in our Root Jesus. One can even be right at heart (which is pleasing to God and a start), while still being wrong overall. Even Human Resources will tell you their first responsibility is to remain true to their head.
Is our arm personally hindering us? Then cutting it off from our personal life may be necessary for the time. Although we do need to be cautious of disabling the body as a whole because some of us will need that limb. I’m concerned in our need to repair past abuses and mistakes we are looking to rid ourselves of vital organs and their gifts. Circumcision of the flesh has no benefit without a circumcision of the heart.
Corporate America seems to have a better handle on the significance of variety in body parts and its positioning that are to make up the goal of the head. From my partial vision and most of the circles I’ve run in, this revolution that makes claims of being new, appears to be more of the old in a new disguise.
Instead of discarding a vital organ and opting for our own unity, an examination of our foundation (an audit if you will) may be overdue.
A hierarchy in the Lord’s Corporate Body may need to be understood as more responsibility, accountability, and authority, not necessarily more important. Some of the unseen and least honorable have been given that crown. Furthermore, we are not called to lord it over another, but to maintain a servant’s heart.
Preachers, teachers, amongst other body parts and giftings, are gifts given to us by Jesus himself. Although the Lord does use people, it is vital that we know our ultimate Teacher is the Holy Spirit. Whether we teach or learn each of us is first accountable to God.
Church should be understood as first and foremost the Lord’s body of which his beloved children are all part of. Then when we love or condemn her, we’ll know we’ve loved or condemned Jesus and ourselves.
Because of the privilege and authority God has given me, I give each of you this warning: Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us. Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.
In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.
Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them. Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!