Are you a living stone?

Are you a living stone?

1 Peter 2. 5-6

As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house[a] to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

Have you ever watched someone build a house, they lay the foundations first and then on top of the foundations the rest of the house is built? 

I wonder how many bricks it would take to build a house?

Certainly more than just one..

If you think about it – how many people does it take to build a house? Just one?  I think not..

                  we need: to start with the architect who draws up the designs, the builder – who co-ordinates everyone, the carpenter, the roofer, the electrician, the bricklayer, the labourer, the plumber. 

All these people are needed to build just one house. 

Jesus is described as the cornerstone of the church in Ephesians 2: 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 

Would any brick do for a cornerstone? No it takes a special shaped rock to be the cornerstone, without the right cornerstone the building would fall down. 

On top of that cornerstone all the rest of the bricks are built. 

Jesus is the cornerstone of the church, but just like a building is made up than more than one brick so a church is also made up from more than one person.  Peter describes us as the other stones, the other bricks that make up the church.  To build the church strong so that it doesn’t fall down we need all the different gifts that people have.

Think about your own church, the different gifts people bring, that help the church to function, the cleaner, the priest, the flower arrangers, the people who bring the milk, the organist, the church warden, the visitors, the regular congregation.

They all go into building a strong church all doing their bit to build the church into a place where we all play our part in building the church.  The church is not just a building – the church is the people of God, coming together with Jesus as our foundation, to pray, to worship, to listen and to learn. 

Many church schools have creeds – I like this..

This is our school, Let peace dwell here, Let the rooms be full of gladness, Let love abide here, Love of one another, Love of mankind, Love of God and love of life itself.  Let us remember – that – as it takes many hands to build a house, it takes many hearts to build a school.

Many hearts build a church also.

This is our school, In these rooms and on the playing fields, we will fit ourselves for the future, let us not throw away these precious years but gain from them all we can.  Let us always remember that a school is NOT a building but a gathering of minds and hearts and a place of friendly guidance and help.

The school like a church is NOT a building but also a gathering of minds and hearts…

Both these creeds could also apply to churches.  The church is not the bricks and mortar but the people that fill it. 

Peter says that ‘YOU’ also are like living stones.  Peter didn’t pick out a particular group, he said ‘YOU’.  That means you and I.  It means the young and old, it means everyone whatever part we play. 

Today, try and list all the roles within your church:

And build a wall of thanks using brick outlines, and say thank you to God for – the congregation, the priest/minister, the children, the adults, the flower arrangers, the choir, the vergers, the welcomers, the cleaners, the servers, the people who do the coffee.  See how many bricks you can fill and put Jesus as the cornerstone. 

Or make a church out of people and put the roles on the different people shapes.
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About Michelle Bailey

Reverend Michelle Bailey is the Rural Officer for the Bishop of Brecon and Swansea  She previously worked in Children's Ministry and was ordained in the Church of England. Her blog includes ideas on presenting concepts of faith to young children to the age of eleven and furthering faith development in an educational context. Michelle currently lives in Wales and is also developing a rural ministry blog.
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