You know what I tend to forget?
Ministry happens in small moments.
It’s not all about leading big programs, or creating huge experiences. It’s not always about droves of people, and lengthy services. (In fact, it’s never about lengthy services. #fanofshortservices :))
It’s not about knowledge, creativity or knowhow.
It’s about willingness.
We simply must be willing.
Willing to step out.
Willing to risk.
Willing to give.
Willing to sacrifice.
Willing to ask.
I arrived at growth group on Wednesday just a little bit depleted. Our day care lady has been on vacation for almost two weeks, I’d already hosted a play group-growth group with 4 other moms and 9 kids total at my house that morning, and my children had both screamed when the babysitters arrived to watch them and two other children during growth group.
But we gathered, our scrawny little summer growth group, which tends to have different people every week because one or many of us is often traveling. As is the nature of summer groups, it’s more casual and open, and you just never know
who’s going to show up. (Though our little neighbor girl, who lives at the park and loves to eat our cookies, was there as always.) But it was a nice little group, and we had a great conversation on Mark 4. (blog to follow on that.)
Things were said that touched my heart. Things like we have to do well with what God has given us. And if we don’t, we start to lose out on opportunities. Opportunities to minister, to fulfill God’s beautiful mission for us, to bring joy–to others as well as ourselves. I felt my heart pierced a little bit.
It’s so easy to get wrapped up in my own little world, and miss out on moments of ministry.
We prayed to close, and my good friend came and plopped down on the picnic table next to me. She shared what was on her heart. It’s in those small moments.
We both teared up, shared our hearts, laughed in exasperation at it all, and settled into that comfortable pause after connection has occurred. She slapped her knee and said, “Well, should we go get our kiddos?”
And I knew in that moment, I had a choice. To be a friend, yes. But also to minister to my friend.
I could have so easily said, “Yeah, I guess we should” and plodded off across the grass to our crazy kids. But instead, I did what the Spirit prompted me to do, what I felt in my heart was right.
I said, “Can I pray for you?”
A big moment? No. Not at all. Not in the least bit. It was a small moment in time, a small moment in our friendship–one that I hope will replicate itself many times over as we continue to do life together.
Ministry happens in these small moments. Her eyes welled up with tears again, and she sighed and said, “Yes, please–that would be great.” In that moment, with heads bowed, we were before the throne of our Father, asking His wisdom, His guidance, His help raising our kids, being content with our life, and trusting Him.
This is ministry. Stealing a few moments to pray with a friend while slapping away mosquitoes on a Wisconsin summer evening.
There were no bells, no flashing lights, no huge signs from God on which direction to go. I didn’t even have a Bible nearby, and I didn’t use fancy words.
It’s just not that complicated.
So thank you, little growth group of mine, for reminding me of the importance of taking those moments, putting myself out there, seeking the Lord in all moments–big and small.
Ministry happens … when we are willing to act in those small moments. They’re so easy to ignore …
Please share … when was the last time you chose to take the moment and minister?