Summary: Before the service, take a box of crayons and pass a few of them out. [to be picked up during the message] Forrest Gump may have said that life is like a box of chocolates BUT I believe the church is like a box of crayons.

Before the service, take a box of crayons and pass a few of them out. [to be picked up during the message]

Eph 4:11-16 NKJV - 11 And He Himself gave some [to be] apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,

12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;

14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,

15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head--Christ-- 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.

Forrest Gump may have said that life is like a box of chocolates BUT I believe the church is like a box of crayons.

*Have you ever noticed that no 2 crayons are exactly like in a box of crayons?

Or maybe that some crayons get used more than others and some don’t seem to get used at all?

Some do a lot of coloring while others just sit in the box and do nothing more than take up spaces.

Some boxes are built strong and are brightly colored while others are shabby and worn…

**When we passed out some of the crayons, earlier, I realized something about the crayons that remained in the box.

**There’s a lot of extra room so they could be more comfortable BUT there is a problem... they keep falling over…

**SEE it takes all the crayons in the box to keep the other crayons from falling over…

Let’s look at some of these crayons…Begin taking up the crayons and discuss the differences between them and place each one in the box.

I use the white crayon [since most coloring book pages are on “off white” pages it has no purpose] for the unnecessary and unwanted crayon to describe how some people are pushed away because they don’t seem to be able to contribute to the picture.

There is always a worn crayon, one with the paper partially torn off. These illustrate those who give and give and are worn down from serving.

Usually there is a crayon that barely gets used and this illustrates those who never have time to contribute to the picture. Those who are always too busy to help or to serve.

One crayon may be marked up by all the other crayons. This can be used two ways. One to describe those who have been blessed to have so many around to lean on and to help keep them on course. The other to describe those who bear the scars of holding others up.

I usually try to find something about each crayon that illustrates some attitude present in the church today. Usually keeping it to no more than 6 crayons.

I take the last crayon and break it in two…give it back to the person and tell them they will never fit my box because they are broken and there is simply no room in the box for broken crayons in my box.

While giving all the reasons why a broken crayon has no place in my box, a person who has been enlisted earlier, walks up to the person with the broken crayon and takes it from them. They put the broken pieces back together and place a small band-aid around the two halves of the crayon. Once this is done they interrupt my ranting and say…“I think they will fit now”

I had couple, who are dear friends of mine left the church because we allow broken people to come in. I discuss the reason she gave for their leaving and how she used the Bible to justify her decision…Her verse of choice is 1Cr 5:11 NIV - “11 But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people.”

From this the discussion turns to the fact that we are all broken and don’t deserve to be in the box.

It’s only through the blood of Jesus that any of us will ever fit…

How do we reach lost people…how do we share the love of Jesus and grace/mercy of God if we tell those who need Jesus there’s no room for them in our box?

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