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FIRST-PERSON: Interdependent by God’s design

ATLANTA (BP)–God, by creation, made each of us inter-dependent! We need each other, and others need us.

For Adam, God gave him a helpmate! They needed each other. All the way through the Scriptures God was putting people together for mutual support and strength.

But supremely in the New Testament do we realize the importance of interdepence. In 1 Corinthians 12:7 Paul affirms each believer by announcing: “… the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all [the common good]….” The Holy Spirit is God’s provision for the people of God. He manifests himself to each member of a local church. But this evidence of the Spirit is not merely for each individual, but for the “common good” or for the “edifying” (building up) of all the others!

Paul made this interdependence very clear when he said, “… to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift … for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry for the edifying of the body in Christ, till we all come to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ….” (Ephesians 4:7,12,13). Paul even expands on this more specifically in Romans 12:3-6.

The implications of this are enormous. Each believer is incomplete without his fellow believers. This is true in a marriage, a family, a church and in the workplace. Each believer has been given by God, from his purpose in creation, a unique relationship with himself. He comes to know God uniquely.

That unique relationship is not merely for him to enjoy, but for him to share with others. Others do not know God just that way and will be incomplete in their full relationship with God without this help. Therefore it is crucial for every believer to be not only open to their fellow believers, but to deliberately look for God in their brother/sister. To be in a full and right relationship with them so you will be able to receive a fresh relationship with God through them is crucial. This means that each believer must make his life and his experience and understanding of God available to others too. We are mutually interdependent.

We are deeply aware of this relationship in our marriage and in our family. Each member must be encouraged to share in an open and free way. This is true in the workplace as well. God places fellow believers in our workplace on purpose — just for this spiritual help.

In your workplace you may lack courage to share your faith. Remember, though, that many times God has placed a gifted believer next to you who can do the sharing. What God has given them is for you too! Or someone is very timid and shy but God has made you an extrovert. This is not merely for you to enjoy your life in the workplace but for other believers to be helped (edified or built up) through your presence.

To receive from others or to share with others will be to ensure steady spiritual growth and maturity. God is greatly honored when we do this, for we fulfill in our lives what he intended when he planned our lives from creation.

Look for what others know of your Lord and receive what they have to share with you. But also look for opportunities to share the uniqueness of your experience and understanding of God with those God has placed immediately around you.
Blackaby serves as president of Henry Blackaby Ministries, on the Web at www.henryblackaby.com. His column appears monthly.

    About the Author

  • Henry T. Blackaby