The Loudmouth Protestant

October 13, 2007

The “Get a Life” Ministry

Filed under: christians,church,entertainment,life,ministry — nickisym @ 12:25 am
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A few weeks ago my young adult pastor told a crowd at Friday night Bible study to get a life. He didn’t mean in the, “go get lit and party your life away” kind of time that some people believe makes a life. He told us that we spend so much time in the church serving that we ignore our lives outside of it. It’s true and I have been guilty of it–until I realized that I was a top offender and I issued a cease and desist order on packing my schedule tightly with church commitments–any commitment for that matter.

But bigger than leaving the comforts of the church, I am just determined to enjoy life in this big city while I am here–in the midst of being involved in ministry. Considering that, I have instituted the “Get a Life” ministry. It’s a ministry I will sow into every so often that supports my dining at great restaurants, catching a Broadway–or off–play, dance performance or art exhibit, going to the movies, treating myself to something nice, etcetera, etcetera.

Do you want to know the most important rule of the “Get a Life” ministry? That you do it by any means necessary and that means that you might have to do it by yourself. I have lived in this city for five years and I realize I have missed out on some opportunities because I was waiting around for other people. Don’t get me wrong, I love the company of others and in some instances I prefer it. But I am also realizing the value of being able to go alone and have a good time. It turns out, dinner for one isn’t that daunting and catching a movie solo is easier when you are dealing with crowded theatres–there’s always room for one.

But beyond solo femininity–or masculinity–just learn how to grab life by the horns and enjoy it. Just go out and get a life.

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September 26, 2007

The Struggle To Be Relevant

Filed under: bible,God,Jesus,ministry,religion — nickisym @ 3:17 pm
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When faced with the thought of whether I am being totally productive in my walk, I go back to works done. I think about how many times I’ve done community service, how I should have gone to pray in the projects, how I should have given money to that homeless person I walked by. I just have this tendency to equate success in the Christian walk with amount of work done on behalf of it and for some time it has been plaguing me. There are people that over-extend themselves in service to the Lord and look at it as their reasonable service. They believe they are doing big things and attending to kingdom business because they are being intentionally busy in their service unto God. And there is nothing wrong with that but my question is, “How much of ministry and service to God is about doing vs. being?

I ponder this because every so often I get stressed out that I am not “doing” enough. I feel I am never out in the field laying my hands to the obvious plow. But then someone will stop me and tell me that another was touched by something I said. Someone was encouraged by a word. Someone was blessed by something I gave them or something I wrote. Because of this, I’ve been redefining what it ministry mean.

Not everyone is called to foreign missionary status or to serve in soup kitchens or to intercessory prayer or whatever multitude of activities a church might officiate to get their congregation involved. Bigger than organized religion and the activity it dictates as necessary for Christians to be involved in is that the fact that the individual must “be” a servant outside of this construct.

My thought lately has been that if I do nothing else, I make sure that I am doing what is necessary according to the word of God. Psalm 21:6 says that we are made blessed to be a blessing forever. We are blessed to be a blessing in our spheres of influence. That means you are a blessing in every place that you go day to day. On your block, on the train, on the bus, in your car, on the job, in school, in the store, etc. Wherever you go, you should be a blessing unto others and I have found that in being that blessing to other you are spreading the good news. A while ago a preacher told me that Christians are to show the world what life is like in heaven. He challenged us to let the Jesus inside of us speak because as Christians we are not called to debate anyone. Dare I say we are not called to proselytize in the way that some denomination do because that isn’t showing the love of Christ or the mannerism of our awesome God.

Don’t let me be misunderstood, I am not saying that organized ministry is a waste, but what I am saying is that at no point should you beat yourself up if you find yourself not involved in it. If you are truly representing the kingdom of God, your daily life will be a reflection of it. You will touch people without knowing it even if it wasn’t intentional–I can say this because it has happened in my own life. When I look at what others do and frown upon myself for not doing the same thing, I am constantly reminded that my place in ministry is markedly different.

So don’t worry about keeping up with the Joneses of ministry, just worry about how your walk will help you to be the 67th book of the Bible because you might be the only Bible that some people read.

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