27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.
28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?
One of the problems we have with the above verses is those that believe it, only apply it to a church service of some type, and don't realize this is a comprehensive insight into how the kingdom of God works best when it's being implemented by His people.
The key to this is its a reference to division of labor, meaning each person has a role to play, and only when they focus on and to that to the best of their ability will they be able to expand the kingdom of God on the earth.
What most of us need to do is inventory our lives in regard to what we believe our responsibilities are, and then narrow it down to a very specialized area. I'm talking here about our contribution to building the kingdom of God on earth, not the job we may be doing in order to pay for our bills. For most people that's two different things.
Paul's rhetorical question concerning whether or not we all apostles or all teachers, points to the need to search for, discover and develop our gifts given to us by God. This is why one of the metaphors for the people of God is the body of Christ. Each person has a part and function, and we need to take responsibility for that function and develop it to the highest level we can.
We need to be specialists
That's just another way of saying we need to be specialists.
Not only that, but we must understand not only what our responsibilities are, but what the responsibilities of others are as well, in order that we may cooperate and work together within our assigned roles when they intersect with one another. What others are good at will never be exactly lined up with what we're good at, so we have to learn to work with one another, which again, is a division of labor, which is the way to get the most accomplished in the kingdom.
One thing that is releasing and freeing for us is the realization we aren't able to do everything. As a matter of fact, once we understand a little of the vastness of who God is and what He wants, we discover there actually is only very little we can do; even in our specialized fields or areas of service.
This is why once we become at least adequate or good at what we do, and eventually with work become experts, we need to find others that are sympathetic to our callings and interests and find ways we can encourage and help one another in our specialized areas of service.
The sooner we embrace this concept and take steps toward accomplishing it, the more we'll get done in this life. Whatever a person's calling is, the most effective way to make a difference in our lifetime is to specialize and faithfully serve in that segment of life. That is really the only way to leave a legacy that others can build upon.
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