Reconnecting to the Body of Christ

by Jessica Dunn

“And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.” — Acts 2:42-47 ESV

This past year has felt heavier on a lot of our hearts as our news and social media feeds have been flooded with heartbreak, death, pain, and injustice. It has been a lot to take in. Then you throw all the different opinions about each issue into the mix and it has caused me to want to shut out the world for a bit.

What I have noticed most throughout this past year is how easy it is not to care about an issue unless it directly impacts me or the people in my life in some way. The closer an issue got to my inner circle, the more I paid attention. If an issue messed with my routine or my people then I would listen or feel compelled to do something. However, I think I may have missed the heart of Jesus quite a bit with this perspective.

When I was in high school, I shattered my knee playing volleyball. I could hardly walk for a few weeks and was benched for most of the remainder of the season. As I was injured, the rest of my body began to experience some pain as well. Walking differently than I usually did, my back started to hurt, my hips were unaligned, and my other leg had to take on more work until my knee was healed. Even my neck and shoulders, which seem so far away from my knee, experienced discomfort and pain. The rest of my body was impacted by the pain of one area.

We are part of a bigger Body of Christ. When one part of our Body is hurting, it impacts all of us. Yet so often, we try to shut out the pain or hurt of others as if it isn’t our problem to deal with. This is the beauty of God’s design for His people: He desires us to be connected and impacted by one another. Each physical body part serves a different function, just like each part of the spiritual Body of Christ serves a different function. Even though our roles may be different, the goal for all of us is the same: to love God and love others. It’s a lot harder to move your body when you are experiencing pain in one area. It is also a lot harder for us as the Body to move if we keep turning a blind eye to the parts of our Body that are hurting.

This requires connection. If part of the Body is disconnected from the rest, then we won’t feel the pain. And if we’re honest, a lot of us prefer it that way. We see people who are hurting, and instead of tending to the hurt, we cut them off like a loose limb and go about our own business. Then we wonder why we are not seeing God’s Kingdom fulfilled in our world. We have to stay connected. Oftentimes, we do not love our neighbors well because we refuse to get to know our neighbors. We settle for social media connection where we can feel connected but stay distant. We cannot love people if we stay disconnected from them.

I look at the Church in Acts and see people who lived life together. They were connected. They gave of themselves in order to make sure all needs were met. This is a beautiful example of God’s design for His Body — connected, caring, compassionate. I want to challenge you to think about how you can connect more to the people and injustices in the world around you. Connect deeper with people who are hurting until they experience healing. We will not be made whole as the Body of Christ until all parts of the Body are healed. It is only when we let the pain of others impact us toward action and compassion that we will see healing and wholeness flow through the entire Body.

Next Step Ministries