“. . . Equip the saints for the work of ministry . . .” (Eph 4:12)
I know – we’re all busy! For us, it started when our kids were young. We had four children. Mike had a full-time job and I worked 30-35 hours a week. I made 3 meals a day. I cleaned my house. I led a weekly Bible Study. I was on our worship team. Mike was a leader at our church – we had a weekly home group and our kids were with us, either in the same room or supervised in another room with other kids from the group.
We were busy, but it didn’t rob us of fun with our family. We played games. We had family TV nights. We ate breakfast & dinner together every day. My boys played summer league baseball and the family went to the games. Mike bowled and the family went to the bowling alley along with other team families. We had many friends! Our kids played together. We had each other over for dinner. We babysat for one another.
Mike & I took turns with other parents serving in the nursery when our kids were that age. We also had turns teaching Sunday School. It wasn’t hard – the other families were doing the same thing. We all wanted more than to be served by others – we all took a share in the WORK of ministry. We loved it.
That sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? Perhaps it was — but it was great! There are some things I wish we had done differently when our kids were growing up (like vacations and things like that) but I never regret being involved in ministry, and having my kids along with us! And this was all BEFORE Mike became an elder, and then a pastor! The relationships we built in that church are still intact and still precious, even though we were sent to another city to start another church over 20 years ago.
Yes, ministry is WORK –BUT it is fulfilling and rewarding work! Consider Proverbs 11:25: “He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed.” It really is true! What you sow, you also reap.
Ministry is not always glorious. We don’t always get recognition for the things we do. Sometimes we are disappointed or hurt by people. BUT it’s worth any difficulty to see a person come to know Jesus and continue in that life-transforming relationship. We may get to participate in their growth, and they get to share in ours.
What a wonderful privilege we have, to choose to encourage others! How amazing it is to witness God at work in people around us! What an honor it is to watch them take on roles where they also reach out to encourage others – that is the joy of the WORK of the ministry.
One of those people is reading this right now. Thank you for being a part of our lives. We are forever grateful.