"the team's the thing"
"Through Him the whole body grows, and with the proper functioning of the members joined firmly together by each supporting ligament, builds itself up in love." —Ephesians 4:16
Examine the roster of any championship sports team and you will find a number of athletes who are referred to as "team players." These folks put their personal goals aside for the good of the team and take on whatever role the coach doles out to them.
We Christians belong to a much greater team, that is, the Body of Christ, with Jesus as the Head (Eph 4:15). "God has set each member of the body in the place He wanted it to be" (1 Cor 12:18). It is critical to play our designated role as best as we can, "doing only what the Lord assigned" us (1 Cor 3:5).
Satan, coach of the opposition, knows his best strategy is to get God's players to focus on themselves rather than on Jesus the Head. Accordingly, he attempts to lure God's team members to covet any position other than what God has assigned. Women may wish to be priests; priests may desire to raise children; intercessors may long to be music ministers; Scripture teachers might long to have a healing ministry. However, if we yearn for a different role than God has assigned us, we miss opportunities to serve in our current role. Then we stop being team players, and begin playing for ourselves. In a sense, we "clutter up the" team (Lk 13:7) and we pull the team down (see Lk 13:8-9).
In our assigned position, "we have gifts that" are both specially tailored to our unique role (Rm 12:6; see also Eph 4:7) and designed "for the common good" (1 Cor 12:7). Therefore, "each one should lead the life the Lord has assigned him" (1 Cor 7:17).
Prayer: Father, thank You for calling me to belong to You. I will love and serve You with gladness (Ps 100:2).
Promise: "Now we have set foot within your gates, O Jerusalem." —Ps 122:2
Praise: Pete wanted to devote more time to a music ministry. He prayed and instead devoted his time to his wife and children.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by one of our editors.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Richard L. Klug, April 10, 2002
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 18, 2002