Have you ever had sweaty ears? I have. Its an interesting sensation having only one part of your body sweating at any given time. With the heat, even the slightest increase in temperature causes my ears to go into heavy perspiration mode. It has become somewhat of a problem because my headphones started stinking. I started the process of rinsing them off each day and spraying them with disinfectant. Occasionally, when I am alone and quiet, I will take them off for a few moments, relying on my ear plugs as backups.
That got me thinking about the whole passage in the 1 Corinthians 12 about the body and its parts. It goes on to describe how each part is indispensable to the body. We have a saying, reflecting a common reality in the church, that seems to cause a lot dissonance with this ideal. "Ten percent of the people doing ninety percent of the work." I hope this doesn't hit too close to home. It can be frustrating and infuriating when you give your heart and soul for something, and those with you, who supposedly have the same goal in mind, don't seem to give a flip. Can you imagine being on a basketball team with five men on the floor? Four of the players give their all, while one is.......ho humming it. One weak link is all it takes. And here we have a saying in the church reflecting 90% weak links?
Although I don't deny that this saying is sometimes true, I do think there are some are some mitigating circumstances.
1. We "hands" often don't recognize how valuable the eyes and ears are to what we do. People have a bad habit of Martha-ing themselves into anxiety about Marys who just want to sit at the feet of Jesus. We have also taken the concept of "not letting one hand know what the other is doing" and drawn some dangerous conclusions. The most harmful of these being, if I can't see what they are doing, they must be doing nothing. This is rarely true.
2. We have missed the value of giving. Often some of our best financial supporters are our least "active". At least from Martha's point of view. The problem with getting frustrated with these folks is twofold. First, do we stop to consider, what we do is possible because of what they give? Because it often is. Second, do we consider their "inactivity" may be do to their "activity" in making money to help God's kingdom? Do we really expect them to be as active as us and make money to support what we are doing? Only 5% of millionares in this country are in that station because of inheritance. The other 95% work. If you can do both, great. If one of our member's primary gifts is "financial" let not disparage them for it, but honor them.
3. Many of us (myself included), have been wearing too many spiritual muffs. With negative thoughts and unsound reasoning we have unnecessarily been spinning our wheels. As one part of the body of Christ we have made things difficult on ourselves. We have gotten all sweaty for nothing. We have worried fretted. God wants us to know the joy of a faith in him. He wants our burden to be lightened. He wants us to enjoy his rest. Until we are willing to allow God to free us from these anxieties we will be deprived of his fullness.
25 decibals may not seem like much. But when you haven't had it.....and then do. Its glorious. Maybe you are hanging onto anxieties. Let them go, and maybe then, the peace that passes understanding can truly be yours. Lets not make things more difficult on ourselves than they have to be. Life is hard enough as it is.