1 Corinthians 12: 12-27 (NRSV)
12 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.
14 Indeed, the body does not consist of one member but of many. 15 If the foot would say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear would say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. 19 If all were a single member, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many members, yet one body. 21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 On the contrary, the members of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and those members of the body that we think less honorable we clothe with greater honor, and our less respectable members are treated with greater respect; 24 whereas our more respectable members do not need this. But God has so arranged the body, giving the greater honor to the inferior member, 25 that there may be no dissension within the body, but the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honored, all rejoice together with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.

Some Thoughts on Today’s Reading—Pastor Pam
The Apostle Paul compares the parts of the body to the individual members of the church. There is an interrelatedness, and he points out this all relates to baptism. In baptism, when we join the church, we become new in Christ. We join the body of believers and make his goals our goals.
The New Interpreter’s Bible Commentary points out Paul’s teaching that through baptism, and the working of the Holy Spirit, believers are made into one body comprised of shared stories. “No matter how many members, no matter how different they are one from another, there is just one body, just as there is only one Spirit working in all the members.”
I think of bread with yeast working through all ingredients that make up the dough. Kneaded into the dough, the yeast permeates every part of that dough that will increase in size and rise. Individual ingredients can only do so much, but together, with the power of the Holy Spirit, we increase and rise.
Another way to think of this is that as followers of Christ, made up of all our many different stories, we come together, and the Holy Spirit kneads us together.
We are meant to live in community with our many stories building up that community. God takes our stories (who we are) and builds something new. We are better and stronger together.
Peace and Grace,
Pastor Pam