Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Never Go It Alone

A poem by Phil Newton, based on 1 Corinthians 1:1-9 (HT Trevin Wax)
How overwhelming, our Father,
that You would show such care,
such love and kindness,
to bring us not only into relationship with Yourself through Christ,
but also into relationship with the local church!
Your corporate focus on us—
sanctifying us in Christ Jesus,
calling us “holy ones,”
and uniting us with the larger body of Christ,
reminds us that Your will for us intertwines with
all of those that Jesus has redeemed,
so that united together in the Body
we discover immeasurable joy and purpose.
So in the church, joined together in union with Christ,
we experience grace to walk faithfully,
enrichment to our speaking and understanding concerning Christ,
confirmation that we belong to You,
gifts for service until Christ returns
to present us blameless in His presence,
and fellowship with the Lord Jesus.
Consequently, we realize that our treating lightly the body of Christ
corresponds to neglecting Your choicest gifts.
Living with a focus on our individualism
instead of our relationship with the body of Christ,
shows how far we’ve strayed
from Your purposes in the redeemed.
Having that “go-it-alone” attitude
when facing difficulties and temptations,
neglects the very means You have given
to build us up in a most holy faith.
Forgive us of these sins of neglect and self-centeredness.
Enable us to know great joy as forgiven people,
united as followers of Jesus Christ. Amen.
- Phil Newton, based on 1 Corinthians 1:1-9