You may have heard the following story before, or a variation of it.
There was once a man who was caught in a flood. He had no way to escape and was waiting patiently for the Lord to rescue him. Along came a man in a rowboat, who said, “Get in! I’ll take you to safety!” The man replied, “No thanks! The Lord will save me!” Later on, as the level began to increase, and water poured inside that man’s house, a man in a motorboat approached, the water by this time being at about the same level as the man’s second story windows. The man shouted, “Get in! I’ll take you to safety!” But the man replied, “No thanks! I’m waiting for the Lord to save me!”
Finally, as the water was nearing the top of his house, the man, by now perched on top of his roof, was approached by a man in a helicopter, who shouted (of course, using a loudspeaker), “Climb the ladder! I’ll take you to safety!” However … you know the story! The man replied the same as the other two times. Well, the man goes to heaven (he was a Christian, but a foolish one!) and he complained to God, saying, “Lord, how come you didn’t save me when I was out there in that flood!” Of course, the Lord replied, “I sent first the man with the rowboat, then the man with the motorboat, and finally the man with the helicopter! How come you are telling me that I didn’t do anything? That was me … all three times!
That is quite a story. But the point, I think, is quite clear. God does not always have to speak to us in dreams and visions in order to communicate to us. God does not always have to do a ‘supernatural miracle’ to get his work done. Oftentimes, even most of the time, I think, he uses ordinary people to do his work, just like you or me. His ‘arms’ are the arms of his people. His ‘hands’ are the hands of his people. His ‘voice’ is the voice of his people. His direction is the direction provided by the counsel of the people. “In a multitude of counselors there is wisdom,” we read (Proverbs 11:14). In the Bible, we read about this, where the apostle Paul describes Christians as being part of the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12). In fact, he even uses those same terms, referring to people as the ‘eye’ or the ‘ear’ or the ‘mouth’.
Each of us has his part to play. No one is any less significant, and no one is any more significant. But, as we read in the Bible, God has placed each one where he has desired. The ‘key’ then, is that each of us must do our part! It’s really that simple. If we would all co-operate, then, my-oh-my, what a powerful, wonderful, perfectly functioning, body it would be! Imagine the ‘ear’ and the ‘nose’ and the ‘eyes’ and the ‘throat’ and the other body parts all working in perfect harmony! Imagine what glorious and wonderful things could, and would, and will, be done, through a body like that! Just … imagine!
Let’s pray: “Dear heavenly father, we pray that you will HELP us to work TOGETHER in perfect unity, as you so desire. What a great and glorious day that will be, when your church does that Lord, and so obeys you in this all important matter, so important that Jesus mentioned it three times in his high priestly prayer. Lord, thank-you that you have made us your arms and your feet … we are your body! Lord, help us to function as your body, in perfect unity, a spotless bride for all to see, and desire to be a part of, for we pray it in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
“That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.” (John 17:21)