Yesterday we were challenged as the body of Christ to be actively involved in the mission of our church. Pastor spoke to us in the morning from Luke 22 on how to STRETCH our service, and then many chose last night to add, switch, or recommit to a ministry for this year. But it’s only January, and now that those inspirational opportunities are over, what will happen? No doubt anyone who has been involved in the work of the Lord at any time has experienced ministry burnout. How do you avoid this trap?
- Pick a ministry that suits your skill sets
Romans 12:4-5 – “For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.”
Hopefully you did this yesterday. The truth is, not every ministry is for every person – because we’re all different. If you hate kids, serving in the nursery is going to be pretty miserable! This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be stretched from our comfort zones, but make sure that the ministry you’re doing is something you’re gifted to do and something you enjoy being part of…otherwise, you won’t be in it long.
- View yourself as a servant, not a consumer
Philippians 2:5-7 – “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation…”
Consumers make choices based on how they feel or what they want…servants make choices based on who they’re working for. Consumers are fickle, non-committal, easily offended, and picky…servants are consistent, reliable, and humble because they’re working for someone other than themselves. Remember that you’re serving God and that it’s not all about you.
- Walk with God privately before working publicly
Psalm 63:1-2 – “O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary”
This is maybe the biggest one, and I’ve experienced it personally. The lack of a personal walk with God will drain you quicker than anything else in the world. I was taught in college that ministry is done from the overflow. If you’re not filling up with God in private, you’ll have nothing to give in public; and you’ll become disgruntled, bitter, and apathetic.
- Remember the big picture
Matthew 25:40 – “And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
When ministry is about what we’re doing, it loses interest. But when it becomes about who we’re reaching, it becomes exciting. Your ministry is about so much more than filling coffee pots, directing cars, washing plates, turning knobs, singing songs, or controlling kids…your ministry is about pleasing God and reaching people in an excellent way. When that mission is paramount, ministry has an exciting purpose that you’ll want to keep doing over and over.
May 2018 be our greatest year of service as we consistently walk with God and serve people!