For many, swimming, like Cross Country is not seen as a team sport but it really is because the skills and body physiques required to become competitive in one of the four main strokes are very different. My wife and I helped out with a local summer swim league during the many years that our kids were involved. I often got the job of being the lane coach for the little guys – which I loved. I remember one event where I asked our 4-year-old competitor “Hey buddy do you know what event you are swimming?” to which he replied “No”. “The 25-meter freestyle. Do you know what that is?” Again “No”. After I acted it out for him and told him it was one lap and that I would meet him on the other end he was ready to go! With the pistol shot, he sprang in the water and ended up coming in third place. As he popped up at the other end I congratulated him and say “Way to go bud, you got points for the team!” to which he replied “I’m on a team? … What’s its name?”
I believe in America that many Followers of Jesus can suffer from the same confusion. Jesus spent his entire three years of earthly ministry demonstrating Body Life. He told his followers that they would do greater things, yet many of our churches today are stuck in a paradigm of professionals doing the tasks of church vs. equipping the saints to be the church.