1 Corinthians 12:12-27
We are all part of the one body of Christ and we are all mutually dependent upon each other.
The illustration that Paul writing to the Corinthians uses of the human body perfectly describes this point. Take a look at each other the human body is amazing, and each part of the body has its own part to play, and yet it all works together much of the time very well.
Imagine that you are a foot. What does a foot do? Does a foot do all the same stuff that a hand does? Should a foot feel bad if it can’t do the things a hand can do? What about an eye? What does an eye do?
Can it do the things an ear can do?
What about the nose? What if the whole body was a big nose? Would we be able to do all the things our body needs to do?
The human body is made up of different parts all contributing in a unique way. And so in being together in the life of the church, we need one another, and each other’s different gifts. For each of us as individuals, as human beings, we need to be connected to one another, we need to be in community for our own wholeness and wellbeing. MHA strives to bring people together, particularly those who feel most isolated, celebrating differences, and enjoying one another’s different gifts.
Whilst there are differences across the generations, whether we are young, old or somewhere in between, we each share a core need to feel valued and recognised. It’s not that we can’t survive without one another, we can and people do. But for some, the waiting in hope for a knock on the door or the phone to ring, can become lonely and isolating. Being church is including those who feel lonely and isolated and holding out for the fullness of life that Jesus spoke of.
When our churches were closed, many of us experienced isolation for ourselves. When community groups closed, and care homes closed to visitors, we learnt the negative impact that loneliness and isolation had on people’s mental and physical health.
All over MHA, generations are coming together whether it is to garden, or dance, play games or learn a skill, at the same time negative stereotypes and ageism are combatted.
There is increased feeling of purpose as individuals, younger and older, serve as teacher, mentor or even a grandparent/grandchild to someone who may not otherwise have that tie.
Research has shown that intergenerational activity builds confidence, self-worth and overall well-being to individual lives. In some ways our reading today is very simple, we need each other, of course we do. But just as Paul had to remind his readers of this simple truth, so do we today.
We’ve all seen stories relating to the crisis in social care and the lack of carers. Which make this wonderful vision of this mutual dependency on each other an unmet reality lived out in our society. MHA continue to be a leading voice in campaigning for fairness in social care. You too can add your voice and be involved.
As a church we are called to speak up for those being too heavily depended on. For society to work, we rely on the essential workers, yet these essential workers are often unseen and poorly paid. MHA believes strongly that carers should be seen, valued and rewarded for the vital work they do.
Prayer: May we each be given the confidence to know the part that we have within the body of Christ, may we be open to receive from each other the things that God has for each of us, so that all people of all ages can find connection, purpose, learning and wellbeing.