Imagine this. There's a room, like an old fashioned room, like a woody pub, and its just one room with a big circular table. You and a bunch of people are prisoners of war and everyone is tied up with their hands in front of them and everyone is tied down to their seats, but everyone is sitting at the table. The people who have you guys as prisoners bring in a huge pot of soup and nobody has eaten any food in the past few days, so everyone is just dying for food. They give everyone really really long wooden spoons and everyone goes to get a spoonful of whatever soup it is. They try to bring it in to their mouths, but the spoons are too long and their hands are tied so they don't know what to do. They can't feed themselves because theres no way to turn the spoons around with their tied up hands, so they fail.
In another room, same situation, same scenario. They get their food and all, but they all decided, instead of feeding themselves, they would feed the person on their left. They couldn't reach themselves, but the spoons could reach and feed the next person. Everyone ate and got full. They succeeded.
Now, why this story? Why did it make me think of me and others? I thought of my church(First Korean Church of Brooklyn) members, most of them at least. Which scenario would me and my church members fit? We would probably be the first scenario with the people that failed to eat the soup. We don't really account for one another, we rarely help each other in need, and we rarely seek to show love. I guess this was the problem for me and made me realize, wow, what have we been building up all these years. We could say we're a church family of brothers and sisters in Christ, but honestly we're no better than the backstabbers on the next block. We gossip about each other, we make fun of each other, we find flaws in each other, and most importantly, we hate one another. We're all in this boat and I can say that I'm the one steering the boat.
I find myself so many times at the end of the day just thinking, how did I impact anyone today. Did I do anything spectacular? I mean it sounds like I'm looking for some sort of attention or recognition from people, but in a way I just want to have done something by the end of the day. Many times I just sit on the same seat I'm sitting on right now and think, "How did I glorify Christ today?" Most of the times, 99/100 times, I have a blank stare at my off white wall.
But, there is hope. Christ.
If we all look to Jesus Christ and what His whole life was about then we can have a chance at growing with each other. He prayed for those that loved Him and those that hated Him, He fed everyone spiritually, and when people were in need of whatever and whenever, Christ came to the rescue. Christ lived His whole life to glorify God and to proclaim the Father's news and with that came love. Christ's ministry was a love ministry.
1 John 3:16 says, "By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers."
We have the privilege to even know love because Jesus was slain on the cross for the sake of the world. His life, His death, and His resurrection was the epicenter of love. And so it lives on through us. It does not stop there to just understand and to know what love is, but to do much more. The second part of the verse requires for us to lay down our lives for the brothers (and sisters). We share that love amongst everyone. We have an obligation with that love and many times we fail to share it. We even fail to keep it a sacred treasure in our hearts.
Going back to edification within the body of Christ. The very focus of trying to build relationships with one another, trying to help one another, and attempting to love one another as Jesus did for us is nothing without love. Even non-believers can show care and kindness to strangers which they do. We need more than that. We as believers have experienced and believed what Christ has done on the cross, we've experienced love itself and now love itself is dwelling in us. We need love at the center, for Christ is love. As brothers and sisters and sinners, let's love one another. Let's pray for one another, call one another, be a part of one another's lives, let's hold each other dear because the devil is out to get us. If we stand alone it's easy to fall, but with all of us together holding each other up, the devil will fail.
So, let's feed each other, not try to feed ourselves and fail. Let's look to the people around us, that most likely need us just as well as we need them and pursuit a love relationship with them that Christ has with us. Let's feed off of one another and grow together. In times of loneliness, in times of trial, and in times of fear, let us focus on love.
p.s. LOVE ONE ANOTHER!