You know how if you say a word over and over enough, it starts to sound strange? Like the overuse of it makes it feel foreign on your tongue and unfamiliar to your ears?
I’m starting to wonder what we really mean when we say the word “ministry” in the church. It’s used so often that I start to wonder if perhaps we just tack the word “ministry” on the end of any work we do either for the church or activity we run through the church because we feel like it needs that in order to give it legitimacy. I fear that by using the word so much we’ve watered it down and become desensitized to the term and its weight. Anything we do, even the smallest and seemingly most insignificant thing, can be a ministry. But nothing is automatically a ministry just because we call it one. We need to approach it as one.
Friends, it’s November, which means we’re officially barreling full-throttle down the road toward that season known as “The Holidays.”
So many wonderful things make up this season. Family, friends, traditions…I could go on.
Another is service. Though needs are present year-round, it seems like opportunities to serve outside our little church communities exist around every corner at this time of year. Basic needs collections, food drives, Thanksgiving baskets, soup kitchens, Christmas gift donations and deliveries.
These opportunities allow us to open up and really minister to people often well outside our church walls, and to reach and love people that we typically don’t. Dear friends, let’s enter this season with a heart to serve, minister to others, and reach outside of our comfort zones to demonstrate the same wild and reckless love that Jesus showed us. But as we go through the season, let’s also remind ourselves that need is not exclusive to November and December, and that opportunities to demonstrate this love exist year-round.
If we approach this season with that mindset, perhaps it will carry us through into the New Year and help us to seek out more opportunities to love and serve others outside of our comfortable church communities.
What does “ministry” mean to you? How do you minister during the holidays and all through the year?