church management?

I guess I feel pretty much the same way about the church, the body of Christ. The Spirit directed it pretty well in the early years before people decided they needed to get organized and make the church an institution, and then when the Reformation hit and there was no longer one (human) leader or unified organizational structure for the church, the Spirit managed to keep the body functioning and united.

Right? I mean, we still believe there is just one body of Christ, don't we? One body, working together as one? Yet there's not a single leader or hierarchy or organization that unites it all. Someone else is still holding it all together and directing its work towards the same end. Right?

Yet we can't seem to recognize this unity or direction unless we set up a leader or devise a system of organization that we can see. I've heard people here concerned about becoming "leaderless" or "systemless"—but how can we be? Isn't Jesus always our head, our leader? Doesn't the Holy Spirit always provide the connection and the "system" by which we are organized and directed in the work of God?

Based on the history of the church (and its continual attempts to organize and manage itself, despite endless disappointments) I suppose I shouldn't expect the majority in any group to trust the Spirit to manage us without the usual organizational workings that we see in every other human group. But I don't think that changes the reality of how the Spirit works for the body of Christ. We think we are organized into congregations and denominations, fractured and struggling between (and within) these factions, but the Spirit sees the one body, spread through all of these and working as one. As we are able, I think we should trust this and work with it as consciously as possible.

Our awareness of (and faith in) the work of the Spirit can then relieve us of the burdens and contentions and temptations of organizational power struggles and experience the freedom and joy of living in God's kingdom here and now. Even if others do not agree, do not see it, and continue with their struggles to manage the church. We can, right now, experience the Spirit uniting and guiding us, giving us the miraculous common life of the body as a gift.