What comes to your mind when you think of our church?
Some of you will think of Tenth’s building: a beautiful sanctuary with new flooring and carpeting, plus classrooms and meeting rooms. Others will think of worship services that includes a particular type of teaching and music that helps us to worship. Still others will think of excellent ministries like the Bible School, Special Needs, Maranatha (teens), Tenth International Fellowship, Tenth Missions, Tenth Mercy (ACTS), and others.
“Speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” Ephesians 4:11–16
In Ephesians 4:11–16, Paul gives his picture of the ideal church: “Speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” Notice that he doesn’t say anything about buildings or programs.
What is Paul’s model for the ideal church?
His model is every member doing his and her part so that the whole body grows healthy in the love of Christ.
This is the ideal church: the people of God growing in Christ and using their time and talent in the service of others. It is the people of Tenth exercising their gifts in “one-anothering.” This is the mortar that keeps the Church strong and built up in every way and what Scripture compels us to do:
- Show mercy and compassion to one another (Zechariah 7:9)
- Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves (Romans 12:10)
- Instruct one another (Romans 15:14)
- Serve one another in love (Galatians 5:13)
- Be patient, bearing with one another in love (Ephesians 4:2)
- Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ (Ephesians 5:21)
- Teach and admonish one another with all wisdom (Colossians 3:16)
- Encourage one another and build each other up (1 Thessalonians 5:11)
- Spur one another on toward love and good deeds (Hebrews 10:24)
- Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ (Galatians 6:2).
Since “one-anothering” represents healthy body-life with no one being forgotten and no one falling through the cracks, this week (today, even) speak with and begin to establish a relationship with one or two people who come across your path. This is a great opportunity to bless others.
Another opportunity to develop relationships is by serving in one of Tenth’s ministries.
Here are just a few ways you can serve:
- The Welcome Center has openings for greeters and information providers. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Volunteers are needed as Tenth’s Nursery provides for our small children. Contact email@example.com.
- As Maranatha cares for our teenagers, adult volunteers are needed. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Special Needs has need of additional volunteers for Bible School classes, especially for men to serve at 9:00 with a teenage boy with autism. Contact email@example.com.
- Tenth’s Choir and Men’s Choir need more vocalists. They also need help with the children’s music ministry on Sunday evenings. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Tenth Mercy (ACTS) second Sunday Community Dinners needs an additional cook with SafeServe certification and people to host tables with our homeless guests. Contact email@example.com.
We living stones are empowered by him to share in the building up, or edifying, of nearby stones.
1 Peter 2:5 says, “You yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood.” It is obvious that Jesus intended to be the builder of his Church [spiritual house], but just as obvious that we living stones are empowered by him to share in the building up, or edifying, of nearby stones.
Make a commitment by establishing deeper relationships with other members or by volunteering in a ministry. Both offer opportunities to build others up through prayer, studying the word together, and serving together.
Your response will be for the glory of God.