Imagining the Body

By Paul Cizek, Youth Minister

How might art teach us to see ourselves as members of Christ’s body?

Start with a $7.50 purchase from the Durham Scrap Exchange.

Consider: What are you good at?  What do you love to do?  What brings you great joy?  What’s your favorite color?  What color are you?  Are you more curvy or jagged?  Rough or smooth?


Trace a body, divide and cut-up the tracing, hand out pieces, and then cover your piece in a way which reflects who you are.




Now put the pieces back together, but not just next to each other.  Connect the pieces; join the pieces.  Don’t be shy!  You’re going to have to draw or paint on each other’s pieces.  Someone might tinker with yours.



Now step back and take a look.

What do you notice about the body?  What was it like to decorate your portion and then add it to the larger body?  What was it like joining the pieces together?

For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. We have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith; ministry, in ministering; the teacher, in teaching; the exhorter, in exhortation; the giver, in generosity; the leader, in diligence; the compassionate, in cheerfulness. 

– Romans 12:4-8

This seems to be a picture of the life God is calling us into in the church.  Is this a good life?

What would the bodies look like if each piece of the body was simply checkered?  Why do you think God has made us with such a variety of gifts?

Was it comfortable integrating your piece back into the whole?  Will it be easy for us who are many and distinct to live as one?

Do we normally think of ourselves as members of Christ’s body?

“Each piece looked so weird on its own, but they don’t look weird when they’re all put together.”


Is part of the challenge to seeing ourselves as members of one body the familiarity and comfort we have with thinking of ourselves as individuals?  I’m Paul – I’m myself.  That’s Stephen over there.  There’s Corrie.  That’s Michael.  What if such statements were “weird.”  What if it just made sense to think that “we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another.”

Lord, helps us see ourselves, who are many and distinct, as one body in Christ.  Cultivate in us a love for the body into which you have called us.  Amen.

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