But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the part with less honor 25 so that there won’t be division in the body and so the parts might have mutual concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it; if one part gets the glory, all the parts celebrate with it.
“You can have ice cream after you finish your sandwich” my mother sternly said. Teenage me looked at the sandwich and my stomach churned. For no good reason, the idea of eating the simple bread, cheese and ham repulsed me. The idea of eating a bowl of chocolate ice cream on the other hand, that was quite appealing to me. It would be years until I learned that I wasn’t just trying to skip to dessert.
I had a ton of medical issues growing up. When it wasn’t one thing, it was another. I was constantly going to different types of doctors to try to find answers to whatever new problem arose. To say that I often hated my body and that I felt like my body was actively working against me would be an understatement.
At 16, one doctor noticed something off with a blood sample I gave and once again, I was signed up for another procedure. This one was different though – August 31st, 2010 I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. Apparently no one had guessed I had it since a common result of un-treated Celiac Disease is shortness due to malnourishment. Since I stand at close to 6 feet tall, it never crossed anyone’s mind. (Can you imagine how tall I might have been?!) That day was not an instant turnaround in my health, but the slow beginning to what would be years of my body working to heal itself of the damage inflicted on it by a lifetime of consuming gluten. The healing was not without its setbacks, often in the form of cross-contaminated food.
As the years passed, many other medical issues that were always looked at as their own siloed issues “magically” cleared themselves up. When my stomach suffered, so did the rest of my body. When my stomach received what it needed, the rest of my body could finally heal.
To be a church body means that at times, something outside of ourselves may suffer. But we are not to silo ourselves from that but be a part of healing the part of the body that is suffering. It may just bring us healing we didn’t even know we needed.
By Rachel Callender
For Pondering & Prayer
Can you think of an example in your life when solving one problem unexpectedly solved other problems in your life? How were they connected? Why may have kept you from seeing the connection at first?
Prayer: Creator God, you who took on a human body with all the aches, pains and suffering that comes with it. Lead us toward offering healing toward one another and allow us to be open to being healed ourselves. Amen.