Exodus 28 describes the clothing of the priests.
No one, serving the Lord, would, even by their dress, be seen as ordinary, indistinct from the world. God’s servants would dress in a way that would bring then “dignity and honor,” a point that should not be lost on those who serve the Lord today. Notice also how the whole of the people of God were such an integral part of the dress of the priests. The small “clips” on the shoulders of the garments were engraved with the names of Israel. The breastplate was to likewise have their names, along with precious stones that stood for the value of Israel before the Lord.
The symbolism seems clear. The priests were to ever have the people of God on their hearts, and their duty was to bear them, carry them, on their shoulders.
All Christians are called to be priests. The religious thinking of our modern world seems much more concerned with the “world” and serving the world than concern for the family of God, the Church. We are chastised for being “inward focused” rather than outward. It is certainly true that the Church has been so guilty of “navel gazing” that we have forgotten our mission to make disciples, but this criticism against the Church has inadvertently and improperly led us to believe the Church is less important than the world.
It is not.
Christians must make sure that the health and well-being of God’s people is primary in our thinking. After all, why would anyone want to be a part of a family the family itself did not value? The Church must constantly be on our heart as we bear one another, members of the Church, on shoulders of compassion and grace.