LEGO was invented in 1947 by a carpenter from Denmark by the name of Ole Kirk Christiansen. Before this breakthrough idea for a plastic toy, he suffered many challenges and setbacks, including his wife dying, a factory fire, and navigating the depth of the Great Depression. Today, LEGO is one of the top 50 brands in the world, it's a word in our dictionary, it's now a major movie, and most homes would have a few LEGO blocks laying around somewhere. LEGO has become a timeless toy for kids of all ages. Interestingly, Ole Kirk was a Christian and said that his faith in God and the support of his local church helped him through his darkest hours.
What lessons can we learn from LEGO for our lives today?
Let's read some words from the apostle Paul first:
Ephesians 2:19-22 That’s plain enough, isn’t it? You’re no longer wandering exiles. This kingdom of faith is now your home country. You’re no longer strangers or outsiders. You belong here, with as much right to the name Christian as anyone. God is building a home. He’s using us all—irrespective of how we got here—in what he is building. He used the apostles and prophets for the foundation. Now he’s using you, fitting you in brick by brick (a prophetic reference to LEGO?), stone by stone, with Christ Jesus as the cornerstone that holds all the parts together. We see it taking shape day after day—a holy temple built by God, all of us built into it, a temple in which God is quite at home. MB
Paul refers to followers of Christ as (1) citizens of a new kingdom (no longer foreigners), (2) members of God's family (no longer orphans), and (3) bricks in the building God is constructing (no longer aimless) - his church. As a result of this amazing change, gratitude is the most appropriate response, along with taking serious our new responsibilities.
Like LEGO we were designed to CONNECT - upwards to God and downwards to people. Everything really is awesome when you're part of a team.
Here are a few lessons from LEGOLAND that I shared with our church a few weeks back as we honoured the 2,615 volunteers who have served faithfully in our various ministries this year.
1. You are a part of the church Jesus is building. If you are a Christian, the question is not IF you are a part of the church but whether you have responded to God's call? Ministry is not optional for disciples of Jesus. We all have such great potential in God.
2. You have a unique contribution to make. Each of us has a unique SHAPE - Spiritual gifts, Heart (or area of passion), Abilities, Personality and Experience. Pray about your contribution, explore the possibilities, experiment with as many areas as you can, examine your feelings, evaluate your effectiveness, and expect confirmation from others.
3. The church is incomplete without your involvement. Like a puzzle with a missing piece or a LEGO construction with one missing part, you are needed! Everyone may not be prominent but everyone is significant in God's work.
4. You will be rewarded for the work that you do. We don't give in order to get but in giving we do receive. As we serve, we grow personally, we often make great friends, we have the privilege of contributing to others, and God is pleased. There is an immediate and an eternal reward for using our gifts to benefit others.
So, what's your next step? As we each do our part, the church of Jesus Christ will be filled with his presence and be a light to our needy world.