One of my claim to fames is I achieved an ‘O’ level in music! What I strangely remember is Beethoven’s Sonata called Pathetique. I think because though I always thought the word meant pathetic when it means passion I also could play the opening bars!
But it is the opening movement that is remembered more than the Sonata itself. In fact that has been one of the developments of our times. Most can recall movements but they don’t know where they come from. They sit independent to the whole composition. The rest being discarded, ignored and totally forgotten.
Local Churches and even streams of churches/networks/denominations have become similar to movements and other than a Churches Together annual service have forgotten the symphony or sonata that they belong to.
Recently one of my friends in another part of the world asked me for advice regarding one of his Pastors who was wanting to church plant in the same town and very close to one of their own existing churches. So even within affiliated networks, independent movements can be formed. Everyone seems to do their own thing behaving like they are the sonata when they are not. They take the name of God in vain because they say God has told them when it may simply be their own selfish motives and nothing is built regarding the kingdom of God. The body of Christ doesn’t grow it just remains immature.
“Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” Ephesians 4:14-16
I’m no expert but I think there are 3 or 4 movements in a symphony or sonata. Each are different in pace, different keys, sometimes there is a correlation to the opening but not always. The movements build independently to the final movement where the composer is envisaging everything coming together journeying to the great crescendo as the audience stand to their feet in the auditorium with rapturous applause.
So please, when your local church does come back together and some have today, others in different parts of the world have already, can we all remember we are simply a movement? We are not the best church in the town or city. The composer created you as a movement. Some are loud and some are quiet, fast, slow, but all are needed. The second movement cannot say let us get rid of the third movement because it is not in the same key. They have no voice. It is the composer’s voice. He is the Head. His name, Jesus.