You Learn Your Purpose Through Relationships
By Rick Warren
“We are like the various parts of a human body. Each part gets its meaning from the body as a whole, not the other way around. . . . Each of us finds our meaning and function as a part of his body. But as a chopped-off finger or cut-off toe we wouldn’t amount to much, would we?” (Romans 12:4-5 The Message).
We only learn who we are in relationship. We only learn our true identity in community.
You’ll never learn who you really are by yourself. You only learn it in relationships. That means you must connect with others for fellowship.
If you had lived your entire life to adulthood with no human contact, you wouldn’t have the slightest idea who or what you were. You wouldn’t even know you were a human being. You only know that because you’re in relationship with other human beings. You learn your identity by being in relationships.
The Bible says we need to be connected to God’s family, the Body of Christ: “We are like the various parts of a human body. Each part gets its meaning from the body as a whole, not the other way around. . . . Each of us finds our meaning and function as a part of his body. But as a chopped-off finger or cut-off toe we wouldn’t amount to much, would we?” (Romans 12:4-5 The Message).
For example, my ear only functions and fulfills its purpose by being connected to my body. If my ear were cut off and lying on the ground, what’s the value of it? Nothing, because it can’t hear anything.
Same goes with my nose and eyes: If they’re not connected to my body, what’s their purpose? They don’t have a purpose, because they can’t smell or see anything by themselves.
In the same way, if you’re not connected to the Church, then you’re not going to know the purpose of your life. You’re not going to know your role. You’re not going to know your function. You’re not going to know your value and your meaning.
Your value, your use, your purpose, and your identity become apparent in relationship to the Body of Christ — the Church.
Talk It Over
Why does God want the church to play such an important role in our individual purpose?
What opportunities do you have to connect with others in your church?
Why do you think authentic community lived out in the church can be powerfully attractive to non-believers?
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This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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