Have you ever had the experience of being on a good team? Good teams are hard to come by. When you actually manage to get on a good team, you get the privilege of achieving victory, success and progress together, which brings with it a massive sense of achievement and satisfaction.
I remember being on a good team when I was in primary school. It was the netball team and we won lots of games. You may be shocked to discover that I was one of the tallest players on the team (I did all my growing by the age of 10!) so I was placed on either goal shooter or goal defense. I enjoyed my time on the netball team because we were a good team, I was placed in the right part of the team and we were winning!
I recently read a 40-day devotional by Rachel Hickson called: Run Your Race (which I highly recommend). In one of the devotionals she talks about a chat she had with her husband about his time in the army: ‘He recalled that one of the lessons he had to learn quickly was how to work as a team and ensure that everyone was working in their area of gifting, fulfilling their potential. Many of their training exercises involved taking responsibility for those around you and helping them complete the tasks within the expected time, not just getting the best time for yourself. You were only finished when the whole team crossed the line. You could not rely on your personal achievement alone to promote you, you had to learn to watch for others and help them succeed too if you wanted to pass your exams and become an officer.’
I’m reminded of the text in Hebrews 12:15 that says ‘Exercise foresight and be on the watch to look [after one another], to see that no one falls back from and fails to secure God’s grace (His unmerited favor and spiritual blessings).’
For a long time I thought that church was just about what I could get out of it – having some friends, something to do, an excuse to roll up at some function the church was holding for a bit of free food! It wasn’t until I became part of FLCG that I realized how important it was for me to be a team player – and a good one – so that, together, we could fulfill God’s call on our lives. Being part of a church is not a place for a ‘take it or leave it attitude’.
God has a specific plan for His church and a specific role for me to play in it and I want to take that responsibility seriously. I am responsible to God and I am responsible to the other team members he has placed in the church. God wants FLCG to be a victorious, successful team, making progress, pushing back the darkness in Grantham and beyond. Just as you can’t have a lax approach to joining the army or even meeting your obligations and responsibilities at work, our approach to church must be much higher on our priority list than anything else (Matthew 6:33).
So why should being part of a church require such a high standard of commitment? Is God really expecting us to make it the priority in our lives? I would like to answer those questions by quoting from Christ the Healer by FF Bosworth (again, highly recommended reading). He says, ‘Every member should be filled and kept filled with the Holy Spirit. The greatest number of conversions today are brought about by an outpouring of the Holy Spirit and through a Church that is in one accord… Most of God’s dealings with men, both in saving and healing, are by the outpouring of His Spirit and through a Spirit-filled, united and praying Church…A Spirit-filled and praying Church produces an atmosphere in which it is easy for God to work. This makes it difficult for the devil to interfere. This atmosphere is the Holy Spirit Himself’.
That sounds like teamwork to me – awesome teamwork! We have a job to do and God has placed us in a team together to do it. God has plans to heal, prosper, deliver, save, bless and love EVERYONE in our community. I want to ‘step-up’ and surrender myself fully to Him and be available for the assignment he has given us at FLCG.
I really enjoyed being part of my primary school netball team. I can safely say that being part of the FLCG team has massively superseded that! I know that I am on a good team in FLCG and I am glad that I have chosen to listen to God and take my place on the team. I am a committed team member and I am being BLESSED abundantly because of that. Ask yourself as you read these final words – Have I taken my place? Do I know what God wants me to do? Am I looking out for other team members so that we can all cross the finishing line together? Am I a good team player? You’re not in FLCG by chance. You’ve been hand picked and hand-placed by the Master, our Coach Jesus Christ.