Tag Archives: spiritual gifts

Embracing our ministries

One growing conviction that I have is that people need to embrace their role in the spectrum of how people approach God. That is, some people have a real talent for spotting hurting people and establishing a connection with them. Others have a gift for explaining theology in ways ordinary people can understand. There are people who have the ability to feel and convey a sense of urgency regarding our need to reconcile with God; others have the patience for working with new Christians.

We all need to grow in these different areas, yet I feel that each of us will always have one or two areas in which we excel. We need to embrace that.

What does that mean?

  • We seek to identify the ministry that God has gifted with us, looking to use it to help people draw closer to God.
  • We observe the body we are a part of, affirming and enabling others as they exercise their ministries. We don’t call them to do ours, nor deride ourselves for not having their ministry. We embrace our ministry and help others do the same.
  • We work in a concerted way with other Christians to make our ministries glorify God by helping the Kingdom grow in three directions: inward, outward, upward.

We have different areas of service, but those ministries are to mesh together in a coordinated way. It’s not about what I do, nor what you do. It’s about what the body does. And one of the main things the body does is help people get closer to God. We do that through bringing in outsiders, discipling new Christians, and enabling the ministries of all believers.

Hearing the call

I’ve had a strange theory for a while. I believe that God often calls people to ministry in the local church by making them aware of a need.

That may not sound all that profound, but I think it changes the way we look at things that bother us at church. Instead of being called to complain, we’re being called to act. Instead of saying, “Somebody needs to do something about this,” we need to be saying, “What can I do about this?”

This idea of calling goes along with something else: you can’t overhear the call of God. That is, God doesn’t call someone else through you. When you see the need for someone to do more with the middle school kids, that’s a call for you, not for the youth deacon.

I won’t say that it’s always true. But if we’re willing to stop and listen, I think we’ll find that the fact that a burden has been placed on our heart is a call for us to act.

I will admit that teaching this concept to others does slow down the complaining a bit. Nobody wants to complain about the bathrooms being dirty because they know I’ll probably hand them a mop!

What do you think? Is this part of the way God calls us to ministry in the local church?

{photo from thebricktestament.com}