If you have ever caught an episode of How Stuff Works, on the Science Channel, you probably found yourself shaking your head in amazement a time or two as you learned how things go from rough sketches on a drawing board to those finished products you use every day. Something as simple as a morning cup of coffee can be truly remarkable should you discover in detail everything involved in getting that caffeine fix to your lips.
The other day, I walked into the common area of a local retirement center where a group of senior ladies was seated together assembling a large jigsaw puzzle. Knowing most of the ladies individually, I knew them to be as different from one another as the individual pieces of the puzzle they were attempting to put together. Their places of origin, religious preferences, tastes in fashion, music, food, likes and dislikes all different, as diverse as the Texas landscape. About the only thing I could find that they shared in common was their silver hair and, at that moment at least, their solidarity in putting together a thousand small pieces of a puzzle so that it would come together to look like the picture on the box.
Having listened to David Griffin teaching from Ephesians 4 on Sunday, I got home thinking about those episodes of How Stuff Works I had watched that revealed the many different and diverse steps and processes used to get coffee from a tree in the field to my cup each morning, and then of those senior citizens working their jigsaw puzzle. In those thoughts, coupled with David’s sermon fresh in my mind, I saw a picture of God at work in the Church.
Its members — teachers, preachers, pastors, evangelists, worship leaders and so forth — are different by divine design, using the diverse gifts God has given them. He is busy at work, piecing each individual member together, unifying a diverse body. And when all is said and done, the completed puzzle will look like the picture on the box, a mirrored image of his son, Jesus.
Personally, I am happy being just one small fragment of the puzzle God is putting together, glad to take my place each Sunday knowing he has determined that, without me, the puzzle would not be complete. What a humbling thought. Exhilarating, too.