INDIVIDUALITY

“All of you are Christ’s body, and each one is a part of it”.

1 Cor 12:27 GNB

One of the big dangers in the Christian community is that of individualism. This happens when one person shines like a star, all the others accept the role of “supporting cast”, and he, or she, becomes a personality at the centre of a “personality cult”. In true Christian community, Christ brings out the gifts and individuality of each one. That means that everyone shines and supports and glories in each other’s individuality.

People find their various needs met in the group life of a healthy Christian fellowship. They find their need for security met in the sense they get of belonging to and in the body. By belonging to the body they come to know that they are “somebody” and they count as an integral part of the group. Their need for identity is met by recognizing that they make a unique and important contribution that is valuable to the body. The need for a proper sense of responsibility is met when they assume concern for others in the body. In effect they say to the one for whom they care, “I need you; I feel with you; I rejoice with you”. So each one grows as a person and as a Christian. Individualism denies our calling in Christ. It plagues the church of God, spoiling its witness and shrivelling individuals. On the other hand, this discovery of our individuality within the life of the Christian community means that we are cherished as unique persons. And it is here that God hides his love for us and encourages us to grow as people and as disciples.

PRAYER THOUGHT

Lord, let love pervade your whole church.