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Romans 12:3-5


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The last couple of months has been a very unusual experience for me. I've only done 1 or 2 of the Romans studies during this time and I wanted to take a moment and attempt to explain something I've not quite understood...


After almost 3 years of living here, an influx of family and various other things, began to pour into my life. Outside of my children, none of my family had seen where God had moved me, when all of a sudden they started coming. Over those 3 years, it hurt alot at times, to be so far from my family, to wonder if they still thought I was crazy to move here and a bunch of other thoughts and feelings when suddenly God opened the doors and they began to come.


Many other things started picking up after several years of being literally isolated, having to do everything myself. Help began to arrive in little, subtle ways and things that desperately needed to be done, began. There's still a long way to go, and it'll be slow progress, but at least it's progress.


On and on I could go, trying to explain the last 3 months, but the point of writing this is not to share how busy things became (although they did), but how suddenly, and quite unexpectedly, I got very quiet inside.


For those that know me, they'll testify to the fact that I usually am going a mile a minute, but for these past few months, God deemed it necessary to silence me. I don't know how to put it any other way than that because it was not a 'me' thang at all. Several times I'd resolve and gear up to do another Romans study and when I'd sit down, I literally couldn't think of anything to say. There were times when people would post prayer requests, and the fluidity with which His Spirit would move through me, giving me the words to say in intercessory prayer, halted. A couple of times I did write prayers for people, I spent an hour before the writing, begging God to give me the words to say because I had no idea what to say myself. He was faithful, but it was very arduous to feel like such a mute and finally, I just gave in.


I told Him in no uncertain terms that I was not going to try to finish anything until I could 'talk' again...until He released me and restored me. I emphatically refuse to write 'just words' for the sake of saying something when it comes to Him and things of Him, so I just folded my arms across my chest and said, "fine".


Being silent is a veryyyyyyyyyyyyyy strange place for me to be in. I had no energy or will to do anything. I didn't pour myself into His Word, I didn't pursue Him with the passion I normally do, nor did I run from Him or reject Him. I just simply had nothing to say, whether it be good or bad.


So, for the past few months, that's where I've been, and the real reason the Romans study halted. In the beginning I stressed over dropping the ball, feeling the responsibility of finishing something I had started....feeling embarassed that I would probably look stupid or a host of other negative things but even after struggling to gear up to do one and failing, I eventually got to the place where I gave up trying.


The fact is, this is not my study anyway. I really have nothing to offer, other than sharing what He's done in my life and how He impacts that but I'm smart enough to know that I could write volumes of books filled with thousands of words that really would have no meaning, unless it was Him giving me the words to say.


It's all about Him, and His designs in each of our life. His words are living, and breathing, whether they be contained in His Word, or through the prompting of His Holy Spirit and spoken through vessels like you and me.


Anyway, I did not abandon the Romans study intentionally. It was a 'God-thang' for His reasons, purpose and glory. I'm still kinda surprised that He could literally shut me up lol but there's something different these days in me...perhaps a rest that was originally forced to teach me the value of doing it willingly.


I've known for a few weeks that this silent period would be ending, but I didn't know exactly when till last night. I still don't think that I, myself, have much to say, but I am feeling a drive to get back into Romans so here I am.



Heavenly Father,


Well Father, I believe it's Your time to finish this study. I feel like I'm embarking on an expedition, not knowing precisely what I'm looking for, but knowing it's You and all things about You. Your Spirit is moving in my heart in a powerful way so I'm willing for You to take me wherever You will.


It feels comfortable to be 'here' again. This is a special place for me, sharing prayers I pray to You, sharing my own learning curve in Your Word with others, just because You asked me to. A part of me wants to say I missed this, and I did in a way, but the past few months have been very poignant and special even though they were cloaked in silence. I still don't quite fully understand all You were doing during that time, but I do trust You and am beginning to see how one of the things I'm learning is to wait on You, and not me.


It's Your study, Your Word, Your everything. May Your perfect will (and without my meddlings) unfold in my life.


In Jesus Name I pray,



3. For, I say, through the [apostolic] grace that was given to me, to every one that is among you, not to be estimating himself beyond what he ought to estimate; but to be so estimating himself as to have a sober estimate, according as God to each one of us divided a measure of faith.


4. For even as we have many members in one body, and all the members have not the same office:


5. So we, who are many, are one Body in Christ; and as to each one, members of all the rest!


Watchman Nee comments in the 3rd verse on the words "not to be estimating himself beyond what he ought to estimate" and writes, "I.e., esteem himself. If we are to have the proper church life, the first thing that must be torn down is the high esteem that we have for ourselves, that we may think so as to be sober-minded. This requires that our mind be renewed by having all the negative elements within it swallowed up by the life of Christ. Then we will esteem ourselves according to the faith that God has apportioned to us, that is, according to the measure of God's element that has been transfused into us."


The rvbv writes, "We have used here Rotherham's rendering, "estimate," instead of the common rendering, "think." It is remarkable that God crowds (in the original) this one word, "have an opinion," or "estimate," four times into this one sentence! It is also striking that this command, not to have a higher opinion of ourselves than we ought to have, is the first, the opening one of all the exhortations which follow. Let us lay this to heart!


Note what this proves: 1. That over-estimation of one's importance among the saints is a fundamental temptation. 2. That God has granted to each one of His saints a certain allotment, or "measure," of faith, - that is, of the ability to lay hold on the mighty operations of the Spirit of grace. And note carefully that God does not say, according to the measure of knowledge, but "of faith." 3. That only the one who comes into a personal discernment of God's special will through surrender to Him, will come to have a "sober estimate" of his own place. 4. That it is a distinct command of the apostle (emphasized by allusion to the mighty apostolic charge and grace given by God to him direct to us), that being surrendered to God, we come into a sober estimate of our place, - of our "measure of faith." This great verse is now to be followed by its explanation."


In the 4th verse, Watchman Nee comments on the word "office" (function), and writes, "Function is for service in the Body of Christ (v. 1). In order to function, we must have life, the divine life for the divine expression."


The rvbv writes, "Here is Paul's first mention of this great doctrine of the Body of Christ, a doctrine which he alone, among the apostles, sets forth, he being the one chosen "minister of the Church" (Col. 1:24,25), - as to its real, heavenly, corporate character. Note now the comparison: 1. Our human bodies have many members. 2. These members, however, constitute a unity: they are one body. 3. Each member is a member of all the others. 4. All our members have not the same work to do.


Even so with us in Christ: 1. We are many, but 2. we are one Body in Christ. "Body" is not here an illustration, but an actuality. "He that loveth his own wife, loveth himself...even as Christ also the Church; because we are members of His Body. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great: but I speak in regard of Christ and of the Church" (Eph. 5:28-32): "The Church which is His Body, the fulness of Him that filleth all in all" (Eph. 1:22,23). This union is so absolute that Paul writes: "As the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of the body, being many, are one body; SO ALSO IS CHRIST" (1 Cor. 12:12). (Of course there is all manner of looseness of talk by those who do not discern, hold, and continually speak in terms of, the one Body of which Christ Risen is the Head. We do not have any right to use the word "body" of any but the true, mystical Body of Christ: those who have been "by the one Spirit baptized into One Body." The confusion of the Scripture doctrine of the true Church, the Body of Christ, with the Church's outward relationships, responsibilities, and testing, as the House of God on earth, has given rise to innumerable evils. The Church which is Christ's Body is the blessed company of all true believers from Pentecost to its Rapture at Christ's coming. The House of God is "the pillar and stay of the truth" upon earth, just as Israel was before the cross. But just as there was an elect Remnant, Simeons and Annas, Zachariahs and Elizabeths, - the true Israel - in our Lord's day; while the temple, the House of God, had been invaded by all manner of corruption and merchandising, having been built up by Herod the Great, a son of Esau; - so, today, the true Church is not what you see gathering into meetings all about you, but that company of true believers known to God, all of whom have been baptized by the Spirit into One Body, and who also are indwelt by the Spirit. All others, however prominent "church members" they may be, are simply part of the "great house" of II Timothy 2:20, where vessels "unto dishonor" as well as those "unto honor" exist; which the "house of God" set forth in I Timothy 3:15 has, through man's failure, become). We deceive ourselves and delude others when we use the word "body" as connected with the Church of God, of any but the true, elect members of Christ, indwelt by the Spirit. And that consciousness (that is, the consciousness of the One Body of Christ of which Christ Risen in glory is the Head and they, the living, Spirit-indwelt members, are the fulness), should be held by us continually to the exclusion of anything earthly or merely local or sectarian. Thus we should find ourselves at once in fellowship with true believers everywhere, for they with us are members of Christ, and they and we are members one of another.


3. We are individually "members one of another." Compare I Corinthians 12:27: "Now ye are the Body of Christ, and individually members thereof." Being members of the Body of Christ, we necessarily are members of one another; as my right hand, being a member of my body, is a member of my left hand. Mark that Paul makes this "membership one of another," an additional (though necessary) truth to the fact of the one Body in Christ. Note carefully that Scripture never speaks of "church members," as men today do; nor of "membership" in or of a local assembly; but only of the membership in the Body of Christ, and of membership one of another. We are members of the heavenly Head, Christ, and therefore members one of another by an operation of the Spirit of God, not by action of man. In local assemblies, according to Scripture, we have fellowship, as already members of Christ and of one another. The importance of seeing this is immeasureable. For the great fact that we are one, actually members of other believers, is made by the Spirit of God the basis of our love toward one another! As Paul says in Ephesians 4:25: "Putting away falsehood, talk truth each one with his neighbor; for we are members one of another." Your right hand has never yet had a fight with the left: on the contrary, each constantly helps the other! And, as to suffering, "Whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it."



Heavenly Father,


Thank You for today's study. Already, a couple of times in writing this all out, interruptions have happened, causing the day to fly, and up till this moment, this study unfinished.


So, I'm grateful to get this study finished to post because like I said above, I just feel a need to dive back into Your Word, with Romans being the are right now, so that I can continue to learn not only more about You, but who I am in Christ.


I love You so very much and it feels good to be 'home'.


In Jesus Name I pray,


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Welcome back! (((((((Darlene)))))))


I noted the part at the end that mentions we've never had a fight/disagreement between our own right hand and our left hand. Yeah. They coordinate to do things like cut food to bring to our mouths; handle the clothing so that the garment is put on us; pick up a baby with loving care......never arguing or being jealous.


Now when a malfunction does occur, it isn't out of disagreement. Like in the case of my hands, it is a case of disrupted communication from the brain....the head. Which is where ALL direction and coordination is supposed to flow from.



So I'm thinking that our left and right hands CANNOT disagree because their function is to carry out the direction sent down from the head. [same for members of the body for whom Christ is the head.....meaning: We CANNOT disagree if we are taking our direction from our Head and not getting our self-centered selves in the way.]


If the members of Christ's body are out of coordination, likewise it means that some communication is not flowing correctly. Either we are hard of hearing when it comes to Christ's directions or close our ears when the direction comes so that we're doing something else.




I'm getting a visual image of my left and right hands clashing into each other and certainly not getting the work done. Like if one was hogging the whole keyboard; wanting to type ALL the letters and not letting the other hand do the letters assigned to it. Comical but...... I'd rather not look like that to God.


MtRider [....pondering the malfunctions of the body.....and the Body...]

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