Summary: Each one of us needs the gifts of the others in the body for our own wholeness, as well as for the health and optimal functioning of the whole church. And all of these gifts are to be used in love.

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How many of you can remember building things when you were little? At my house we had Lincoln logs and tinker toys and cedar blocks, and I could spend all day building houses. I always envied the kids who had Meccano sets, you know, the metal strips with holes in them that you could put together with nuts and bolts. And another big treat was spending the day with my dad in his workshop, building doll furniture or putting together model cars. I didn’t care two hoots about cars, you understand, I just liked putting all the pieces together.

Some of the stuff they have nowadays puts all those things to shame. Lego’s are a positive addiction. I know adults who still play with them. I didn’t think you could beat Lego’s until my godson Ted got a set of K’nex for Christmas. I don’t know what you’d call them, they’re not blocks - all kinds of parts that fit together - have you ever seen those? We had a project to build a tower taller than I am, about five and a half feet, and it had moving parts, pulleys and balances and so on, so that if you dropped a ball in at one end it would run through various chutes and set other things in motion; one of the things it did was make a little man on a ladder climb up the tower. Well, Ted’s grown out of it now, more’s the pity, because I haven’t.

I still like making things, but without the god-kids to inspire me I stick more to needlework., the smaller and pickier the better. Not everyone gets as much fun as I do out of putting things together. Maybe some of you would rather tinker with an engine or build a collection or plan a dinner party. Maybe your creativity is invested in building a family or a business, designing a database, coaching a team or arranging a song. But it seems to me that there is in every one of us a deep-seated desire to create, to build or make something new, something that has our very own stamp on it. That’s what’s behind the incredible popularity of craft stores. It just astonishes me, every time I go up to Michael’s to buy yarn or beads how many different kinds of crafts people are into nowadays.

Some of you may not have had the chance really to explore your creativity, but I do believe that it’s an important part of every one of us.

Anyway, whatever it is that gets your creative juices flowing, there’s a process involved. There’s a plan, there are parts, there’s a beginning and an end. And I don’t just mean an end as in "It’s finished, I can stop now." No, I mean an end as in purpose, that is, what is it for? To what end am I investing all this time and effort? What is it supposed to be or do? And once you have that answer in mind, there are a whole lot of other questions that come scrambling along in its wake. What size should it be? What parts do I need? How much room will it take, how much time, is there a blueprint? It can get to be a pretty complicated process, trying to put all these parts together. But of course that’s what makes it interesting.

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