The service was just about to begin while I was standing in the foyer noticing someone new walking through the door. I extended my hand and he shook it. He had the easy to recognize church-smile on his face, wearing church-casual attire. I wasn’t surprised to hear that he was visiting from another assembly he had grown tired of, and now he was shopping around to check out his other options. I discovered years ago that some people feel that they become better when they start attending a better church. I’ve also discovered that they’re absolutely right! Today’s text shows us what a better church looks like, and how you would benefit if you were in one.
In Romans 12:3-8, Paul reveals Three Ways You Become Better In A Better Church
1. You become an equal member
If you were in a really great church you’d identify and be identified as an equal member.
The apostle Paul was absolutely a great man. If anyone had a reason to boast, I think it’s him. The entire world today still feels the effects of his ministry. Rather than speaking from his position as the apostle to the Gentiles, though, in this passage he speaks based on the grace he’s been given.
Paul identifies as an equal member of the church (or, as he calls it, Jesus’ “one body”). As an equal member, he appeals to our equality.
2. You become someone who belongs to the other members while they in turn become people who belong to you
If you were in a great church you’d truly feel ownership.
Paul tells us that we are all equal members of Jesus’ body. We all have different parts to play within the body, but we all make up the one body and are all equally important. Paul uses the illustration of the body in order to teach that every part is equal because they are judged according to the whole, and every part belongs to each other because they are interdependent.
3. You become healthy by serving and by being served
If you were in a great church you’d be serving and you’d be served, for the sake of mutual benefit.
Paul teaches us that every part of Jesus’ church (a.k.a. body) absolutely needs to serve the other parts in order for the body to remain healthy. In humility, we need to recognize our equality within the body regardless of the role we play. And, in humility, we need to serve the body according to the part we find ourselves playing.
So, where is this better church?
You probably called it – yes, the post is kind of a bait-and-switch. A church becomes better when you take your place as an equal member, valuing the relationships around you, and when you take ownership over your own spiritual health by rising up to serve.
The better church you’re looking for may be the church you’re currently attending. It’s the church where you take some ownership and realize that your service is what makes you healthy and the others around you healthy. It’s the church you attend where you realize that your regular attendance and personal engagement really matters because it’s about relationships. It’s the church you attend where you realize that you’re an equal member, with equal responsibility to helping the other members as much as they’re responsible to help you.
Every church is made better by the members who take ownership over each other’s spiritual health by humbly serving each other, committing to the relationships, and choosing to make that church a place where the lost can come to Jesus.
How You Become Better In A Better Church
If you’re a Believer, then you become better by stepping up, serving, and taking ownership. When you step up, serve, and take ownership then your current church becomes better.
What about you?
Are you serving? Are you stepping up? Are you recognizing how important the relationships around you are?
Or, did you see something different in the text?
Sharing helps other busy people connect with Jesus, too.