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Summary: Jesus tells us that all of us are members of the Body of Christ, also known as the church. We don’t come to church as individual people and then leave. Jesus tells us that we are to be a team of people who work together for Him.

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Good morning boys and girls!

How many of you like to do things for yourselves, such as tying your shoe laces or getting dressed or brushing your teeth? Do you like it when people try to help you when you don’t need their help?

Boys and girls, there are some things that we can’t do by ourselves. For example, could you run a relay race by yourself? Could you play basketball or football if you were the only person on the team?

The church is the same. Jesus tells us that all of us are members of the Body of Christ, also known as the church. We don’t come to church as individual people and then leave. Jesus tells us that we are to be a team of people who work together for Jesus. Each of us is an important part of that body, and all of the things we do are just as important.

Our church body is just like our human body. All of the parts have to work together, and all of the parts have to be there. Suppose we were missing an eye or an ear or a hand or an arm or a foot or a leg. What would happen?

Let me tell you a story about how important it is for people to work together for Jesus. It’s a story of a little girl named Shelly.

I like being on our youth group planning committee, thought Shelly as the members shared ideas for making their meetings more interesting. But she frowned when Cole offered his suggestion. "How about planning a mission program that reaches out to kids in our community?" he asked. "And let's give everyone in the youth group something to do. You know--get everyone involved."

Mr. Gray, the youth leader, liked the idea. "That sounds good," he said, "and it will fit in nicely with the Bible study I'm planning for the next several weeks."

"But some of the kids never want to do anything," objected Shelly. "I don't see how we can we get them involved if they're not really interested, so what would we do about them? Or doesn't it matter? Do we really need them?"

"Nah." Zoe, another committee member, shook her head.

Cole disagreed. "We want them all to have a part," he insisted.

"Let's think about that, kids," said Mr. Gray. "Let me ask you something." He turned to Shelly. "You broke your thumb a few days ago. Does it matter?" he asked. "How important is your thumb?"

"My thumb?" asked Shelly in surprise. She laughed as she looked down at her bandaged thumb. "I didn't think I used it much . . . until I couldn't use it at all," she said. "Now that it's broken, I see how much I really need it. It's way more important than I ever knew!"

"Yes, I thought it might be." Mr. Gray smiled. "And God says that's exactly how it is with the body of believers. All who believe in Jesus are referred to as the Body of Christ, and every single member is important--just like every part of our physical bodies is important. Each person has a job to do for the Body of Christ to function properly."

"That makes sense," said Shelly, "but . . ." She frowned. "I still don't see how we'll get kids to help if they don't want to." She looked at her thumb again. "Or do you think they will want to if we show them that we need them?"


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