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Pardon this Intrusion

What do you call a group of cows? That one is easy. Everyone has heard of a herd. Same with deer when they are together. Elephants, too.

You might also know that bats gather in colonies, dogs run in packs, and quail live in coveys. But did you know that a group of kangaroos is a troop? When that helps you with a crossword, just remember that you heard it from me! Why a troop? I have no idea.

But the names of some animal groups (as provided by the U.S. Geological Survey) make a lot of sense. For example, a group of buzzards is a called a wake. Not hard to figure that one out, huh? How about giraffes? Together, they’re called a tower (of course, I thought just one made a pretty good tower).

These will make sense to you, too: hippopotamuses are a bloat (what an understatement), hyenas form a cackle (what a laugh), leopards come in a leap (in more ways than one), monkeys come in a barrel (hopefully not literally, but now you understand “more fun than a barrel . . .), porcupines are a prickle (obviously), flamingos take a stand (that’s all I’ve ever seen them do), and sharks form a shiver (personally, it only takes one to give me a shiver). Finally, a group of cockroaches is an intrusion. But you already knew that!

So, what do you call a group of Christians? Church. And that’s the only way they live – ingroups.

God places all those who are saved in his church (Acts 2:47). Nobody is allowed to opt out. Every Christian is part of the body of Christ and has an interdependent relationship to other Christians. “The body is a unit,” Paul wrote, “though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:12).

Just as your body parts must remain in your body to survive and to contribute to your life, every Christian must remain in the church, the body of Christ to survive and to contribute to its life.

If you were a rhino, you and your friends would make a crash. Trying to be a Christian apart from the church is also a crash, but not one you’d want to be in. Find God’s group and get in. It’s where you belong!


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