(this post from 12/28/09 recently took on new relevance for me due to a dear friend's influence on my life, on my path, on my puzzle pieces. So I'm pulling this one out of the vault, back into the light of day, this one is for you, my dear friend...)
"...that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God."
What a rich prizm of perspective is afforded me when I manage to see life not so much as a picture, but as a puzzle, and my particular persuasion as merely a piece of that puzzle among many many pieces that comprise the compostion.
Pardon the mixed metaphor, but mine is not a panoramic lens. There are others who have vantage points that vary from my own, whose vision I benefit from. What a gift to be privy to others' perceptions, especially where our concept of Christ is concerned.
Dozens of denominations make up the fragmented portrait of Christ that we present to the world today. How wonderful would it be if, instead of compartmentalized convictions and stubborn segmented stances, we could, as Ephesians 3:17-19 suggests, "come together", each faction foregoing it's appetite for autonomy, acknowledging that their piece of the puzzle is just that, one piece of an intricate array of pieces that make up a mosaic of our Messiah. When we're willing to do that, this jigsawed picture of Jesus will come together. Broken bread made whole again.
It's an age-old altercation that still ripples through the ranks today, a power struggle first depicted among the disciples in Luke 9:46-48: These factious followers were arguing about who among them would be the greatest. The epiphany that they were one body - making their question moot - had not dawned on them yet.
Two thousand years later we still struggle with that concept, clinging stubbornly to our separatism, but the call of Christ remains:
that you may know what you can't possibly know apart from one another,
vis a vis, the fullness of My Love.
"Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!...For there the LORD commanded the blessing—Life forevermore."