Some seem to think that everyone and every organization in God’s kingdom must be exactly like them. But can you imagine what a Beethoven symphony would sound like if every instrument were the same? How can you play a bass note on a piccolo? Or, who would go to hear it if every instrument played the same notes as all of the others? And what a horrible experience if they only played one note! Even a drum must have variation in its licks or its monotony quickly becomes unnerving. No, beautiful symphonic music only reaches its full grandeur with a large variety of instruments playing a variety of notes, at various times. But, they obviously must be playing them in proper relationship to each other or you only have noise. If everyone is playing their own tune, regardless of how expertly they do it, the total result is just incredible noise. But music is to be enjoyed. So, if no one can discern the tune, then the obvious solution is to put more effort into it, right? Everyone must play louder, right? How silly to think that just working harder for God will accomplish His purposes. Each of the musicians can be a virtuoso, everyone can be in perfect tune, and even be reading from the same music, but if they are not following the conductor, there is chaos, and the audience will swiftly disappear. Could there be a clue here as to why church membership is declining and this country is so rapidly falling into a moral abyss?
We have the Bible to instruct us in all things, and God has blessed us (especially in this country) with incredible tools and resources. We have an overabundance of brilliant ideas, and we are not short of talented people. So why do we not see the whole body of Christ working together to demonstrate the glory of God. Why are His invisible attributes and character not made visible and understandable to this fallen world in a victorious, triumphant symphony. Why, instead of setting in raptured awe at the glorious beauty of God’s church, are they turning away in disgusted droves and writing legislation as fast as they can to stifle all Christian voices? Could it be that we are trying to serve God our own way with no regard for the whole? And when we must interact with another ministry, must it always be on our terms? Must everyone play the same note on the same instrument? Where is the beautiful harmony in that?
Jesus must be the head! Period! Only he can put it all together. Only His way really works. Only His power flowing through humble, obedient minds, hearts, and hands can reveal the glory of God. “I am the vine, and you are the branches. Apart from me you can do nothing!” He said. Regardless of how “holy” or “religious” we are, or how high our calling and status is, or how popular and successful we seem, only Jesus really knows what is going on and how to deal with it. I certainly would not have washed the feet of Judas. The religious leaders didn’t know how to deal with prostitutes and tax collectors, but Jesus was quite good at it. He is the king of the universe, and must be the head of the church, and that means the whole church, not just mine. We must work together as one body, as one integrated, cooperative whole. That means that we, as individuals and leaders, must submit to Him and diligently seek Him in all things or we will just be making noise.
I certainly do not know how the homeless ministries can work together with the prison ministries, and the street preachers, and the youth camps, and the . . . . Nor do I know how the First Church of High and Rigid Ritual, can work together with the Top Tabernacle of Holy Roller Revelation. But that is why we must be humble enough to submit to the head, Jesus, who tells us that it must be done, and knows how to do it. If I am in charge, then He is not, and I am against Him instead of for Him. We must trust Him enough to give up our ways and do it His way.
It is when we are each humble enough to submit to one another in love as He tells us to, that the world will see the Glory of God once again fill the temple.
Rex A. Chinn