I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.Ps 139:14
The good, the bad, and the ugly
I truly am fearfully and wonderfully made. I can tell you many things that I am great in. I am an analytical prodigy, a teacher, a systemic thinker. I am skilled in many theoretical tasks, a great programmer and software architect. I can analyse and synthesise problems in diverse areas. I think I can write, preach.
Thank you for bearing with me through this seeming boast.
Because I have to tell you that I am terrible at many more things. I am socially challenged, as they call it. I hate small talk, telephone calls, crowds. I am emotionally underdeveloped, rather rational. I can’t read people nor have them feel at home and loved. I am getting better at those things, but still, there remain so many things I can’t do.
I can’t bake, garden, swim. I easily lose interest. I am going to stop here, because you get the drift.
But you know what? All this adds to my being fearfully and wonderfully made.
Because one of the things I know: I can’t do it on my own. I would probably even forget to eat.
Made for Team
We are made for relationship. We are made for team. We are made to complement each other.
I have always believed that God gave me all these talents to help people. To share. To teach. To build. And that others had their gifts to just do the same.
I have great respect for everybody that can cook—sorry for my lack of expressing this. I respect people that can keep a group together, build a home for them, comfort them. I admire people that are great in languages, communication, interpersonal skills. I look up to prophets, worshippers and musicians, painters, artists of all kinds.
And I think that they grow into their full potential if they not only exercise their super powers, but help people grown in them as well.
My greatest desire: to invest all I have into others, and them investing their all into me. So we can grow—with God’s investment into all of us—to become our best. A body working together and learning from each other, investing into each and every part what each and every one has. Gold and silver I do not have, but what I have I give you. (And somebody else probably does have the gold and the silver.)
How shortsighted and ignorant have we been. We built offices and hierarchies to execute our gifts and manage those of others. We stopped short because we held back, secured positions. But not only that. We stopped short because we would not be interested into the strengths of others. We would not allow them to invest into us. We robed them from their calling, their raison-d’être, their reason they were alive. To help us mature. To complement us. To complement the team God put together.
Sometimes we thought that being assembled as a team by God suffices. Somebody lately told me something to the degree of: I decided to be in relationship with you. If you need me, I will be there. In the meantime, we don’t need the emotional fluff of speaking with each other.
That is as if I gave my life to Christ and then told him: whenever you are back mounting those white horses, riding against the enemy at Armageddon, count me in. Just let me know when I have to be where. In the meantime, you know where I am.
That is like marrying my wife and telling her: let me know when you have need of me, and until then just trust that I will be there.
Jesus broke his body, so that the body of Christ could be assembled. He gave gifts that we can grow up and mature and come into unity. Paul taught us about the body of Christ—he the head and we the body. So did the whole old testament in shadows like the priestly garments or the tabernacle. This is what Jesus prayed in John 17: we in him and him in the father.
I hope that we grow to share and invest into each other. For this, it is necessary to be interested in the other, but also to know and develop your own strength. To know your weaknesses and be thankful for the brother or sister that complements you in that area.
Can I expect you to share all you got from God with me? No, because it has to be your decision to do so. Can I expect you to listen to all I have to say and receive all I want to give? No, because it has to be out of free will. But as a teacher, I have the duty to tell you—you can do with it whatever you want. But I urge you to chew on it before spewing it out. It might be bitter in the mouth, but sweet in the belly.
What did Jesus say? A teacher has a word in season and out of season. At times, what others say, do, invest might be out of season. Just put in on a shelf, store it in your store house. There might come a time…
God will lead us into a great time of networking in the near future. He has and will continue to complement us with people into full fledged teams. As Paul said to the Corinthians: you lack nothing.
It is all there. We used to say that everything is in the heavenly store houses for us, we just need to go and grab it. Those heavenly store houses have names: you and me. They are called Frank, David, Larry, Fred, Sue, Christel—and even Ralph. Similarities with living people are more than coincidental, because this is what we were made to be.
Jesus said that they will know us by the love we have for each other. A great part of love is the appreciation of the gifts and callings of the people around us, so much that we will not hold back to grow into our own calling, and if only so they don’t lack the complementation they need to be their best.
Expect God to place and position, to bring people into your life. Not so you can profit from them solely, suck them out and spit them out. No, such that there can be a holy symbiosis, together building a body that is greater than its parts. In him.
Expect it. Or is it happening already? Let me know.