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“Quick! Who’s good at shooting rubber bands? Get them to the front! We’ve only got a few minutes left!”

What could God possibly teach us while racing around a sports complex, careening through a mass of over 1,000 teenagers?

As it turns out, quite a lot.

Each summer I have the privilege of attending Pensacola Christian College’s Teen Extreme with my youth group, and it’s always a week packed with fun activities, new experiences, and spiritual encouragement.

This summer was no exception, and I enjoyed every minute of it. We played many games during the week, but our favorite was The Amazing Race.

(I use the term game quite loosely. It’s more like run-around-like-insane-crazy-people-while-trying-to-get-points-for-your-team-and-not-die-in-the-process. But that’s too long and might scare some people, so we’ll stick with The Amazing Race.) 🙂

To play this game, we split into groups of seven, then ran (well, we were kinda supposed to be walking, but yeah—that didn’t happen) to dozens of different stations throughout the sports complex. At each station, a challenge was set up for us to complete. Points were awarded for successfully completing each challenge.

To begin each challenge, we absolutely, positively HAD to have our entire group of seven people. If we didn’t have our whole group, we couldn’t play. Not every person had to complete each particular challenge, but they had to be present.

Every challenge required a different skill. Balancing nails between strands of string required a steady hand. Blowing bubbles through a hula hoop took healthy lungs and a lot of hot air. (There’s a few in our youth group with an abundance of the latter!)

Contorting oneself through hoops required flexibility. Doing push-ups called for strength. Throwing bean bags at a target required good aim.

Oh, and we can’t forget shooting rubber bands at plastic cups. (Who would have thought THAT skill would come in handy?)

As we raced from one challenge to the next, a couple things became clear:

We were all skilled at different things.

And each skill was required if we were to be successful in the race. 

One person couldn’t complete the challenges alone; the entire team was needed.

What a great picture of the body of Christ!

God never intended for us to go solo, winning the world for Jesus. We are meant to be a team, working together to advance His Kingdom.

Not only are we a team, but we are also gifted in different areas. Each gift—no matter how small—is essential for us to successfully do the work God has called us to do.

God needs someone to clean the church bathrooms just as much as He needs someone preaching behind the pulpit.

God needs someone to wrangle the kids in nursery just as much as He needs someone to sing in the choir.

He needs you to do what He has called you to do, no matter how small it may seem.

The only way for us to fulfill our purpose as the body of Christ here on earth is for each of us to embrace the task God has given us to do.

“For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.” (I Corinthians 12:12)