Our Spring has been very busy between a musical last weekend, soccer games and entering the world of foster care. As a result, K's enthusiasm trumped her preparation. The cause race registration fees supported was worthwhile and the atmosphere at a youth triathlon is always rewarding, so off we went.
The boys have no interest in triathlons these days. Years ago they 'tried' but announced their retirement at the ripe old age of 9.
R loves to be busy, involved and helpful so he offered to volunteer for the event. He was assigned a position at the finish line helping with the medal distribution. Assigned responsibility, paired with a friend of mine and our local baseball team's mascot, he was in heaven.
P is a natural born encourager, so he decided to make a sign and be his sister's cheerleading section.
As I watched my three--experiencing the same Sunday afternoon in very different ways--I realized this is the way God intended us to live.
When the three roles converged at the finish line, I got a picture of the body of Christ--community as He designed it to operate.
We are all uniquely wired with various bents for service and engagement with the world. All three roles were needed today: competitors, volunteers and supporters. All contributed to the atmosphere and the ultimate success of the event. And so it is with us.
As Ephesians 4 puts it:
Here’s what I want you to do... I want you to get out there and walk—better yet, run!—on the road God called you to travel. I don’t want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don’t want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere. And mark that you do this with humility and discipline—not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences.
You were all called to travel on the same road and in the same direction, so stay together, both outwardly and inwardly. You have one Master, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who rules over all, works through all, and is present in all. Everything you are and think and do is permeated with Oneness...but that doesn’t mean you should all look and speak and act the same...He keeps us in step with each other.
Ephesians 4: 1-7, 16 The Message translation
May we not compare ourselves to the roles others have been called to serve, or even the pace at which they do so, but instead faithfully show up in the place He has assigned for us.
For one day, we too will meet at the finish line and celebrate together the race to which we were called. Many roles, one amazing race. What a glorious day that will be!