After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice:
“Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying:
“Amen! Praise and glory and wisdom and thanks and honor and power and strength be to our God for ever and ever. Amen!” Rev. 7:9-12
I’ve never been a very good “group” person. I don’t like group projects. I don’t like being one of the many, as if I can be summed up or accurately characterized by the multitude around me. After all, I am not like that lady. I want to be seen, recognized, identified, separate, unique…special. I don’t want to be a finisher, I want to medal.
Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body. 1 Cor. 12:7-20
Guess which word I get fixated on? “Part“. Which part am I? What is my function? Am I playing my part fully? Is the manifestation of the Spirit doing all it can through me? Yup. Me. Me me me. And I wonder why I start to feel a little crazy, restless, and out of sorts. I am out of sorts when I dislocate myself from the Body!
The well formed tooth is just not the glory of the body, but it is necessary for the consumption of food to provide strength and nutrients for the functioning of the body. And so it is with each little part. They are necessary and important, but not as severed parts. They are crucial and significant for their contribution to healthy functioning of the whole.
And so God gently placed my perspective to that Day, when I will be in the multitudes before His throne…and in that crowd I will want to be nowhere else. My focus will not be on my reputation but on His. The consuming thought will not be what role I played in 2012-2022, or any other time frame, but what role He has played from beginning to end. May I spend more time meditating on His glory, on His role, on His function, on His beauty, on His strength and on His wisdom, which is the person and work of Jesus. Then I may enjoy the stability that is mine as one grafted in, no longer dislocated or severed, but alive with strength as a branch attached to the Vine, as one clothed in Him, as a tree whose roots are deep.
Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers. Psalm 1:1-3