Thursday, February 5, 2015

Made for More: Forgotten Heroes

Forgotten Heroes
1 Corinthians 12:14-26

            Amy Adams is one of the most respected and popular actresses in films these days.  But last June, she made big news for something besides her acting.  She was flying first class from Detroit to Los Angeles, and as she boarded, she noticed a soldier sitting in coach.  She went to a flight attendant and told her that she wanted to trade places with the soldier, giving up her spot in first class.  She did this all very quietly; the soldier himself didn’t even know who his benefactor was.  Suddenly, he found himself being ushered beyond the curtain into the coveted land of reclining seats and hot towels and five-star food.  But an ESPN reporter happened to be in first class, and witnessed the event.  She quickly posted about it on Twitter, and before long, what Adams had done was headline news.  It was one of those rare stories in which a person who courageously keeps us safe, and gets no attention for it, traded places (if only for a few hours) with a person who gets far more attention than she wants.  But the irony is that it was so temporary.  Quickly, things went back to the way of the world.  Amy Adams became even more famous, even if she wasn’t seeking that.  And we still don’t know that soldier’s name.  Few soldiers are household names; most of us can’t even name the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.  No EMTs, social workers, or infectious disease researchers are famous, either.  Nor are people who teach in inner-city schools, police officers, or foster parents.  These people and others like them are forgotten heroes.  They rarely if ever receive any credit or fame, but our society would disintegrate without them.   
            We have plenty of forgotten heroes within the church, too.  We’ve been talking about spiritual gifts, and last week, we talked about some gifts that get a lot of attention in churches these days.  But in my estimation, only a small percentage of God’s people have those gifts; probably less than 10%.  There are so many other gifts.  I can’t list them and define them all Sunday, first of all because we don’t have time and second of all, because there is literally no comprehensive list of spiritual gifts in the Bible.  But I do want to name some of these gifts.  Perhaps I will name one you have.  Remember, we’ve provided a spiritual gift survey you can take, but ultimately we find our gifts by serving, by volunteering to meet needs.  In the second part of the message, we’ll look at what 1 Corinthians 12 has to say to you and me.  I hope to see you Sunday!

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