During the holiday season, people tend to evaluate their priorities. Let me encourage you to evaluate the level at which you are involved in serving the Lord at your church.
Why should you get more involved? Here are a few compelling reasons to consider:
The laborers are few.
You’ve heard it before: The Gospels only record one prayer request from our Lord Jesus, “Pray for laborers.” If you are not already active, somebody somewhere is praying for you to become involved in the ministry. The need is greater than ever. Laborers are as relatively few as ever.
A popular business principle is one called the 80/20 principle. Basically it goes like this: typically 20% of the people do 80% of the work. In many local churches, 20% do 80% of the giving, 20% of the people do 80% of the outreach. You get the idea.
Children tend to emulate what they see, not what they hear.
When Jesus selected His apostles, He chose them to be “with Him.” How significant. Ministry is more often “caught” than “taught.” Maybe this principle is what motivated Luke to write of all that Jesus began both “to do and to teach.” Teaching is most effective when doing (on the part of the teacher) precedes it.
What are your children learning about positive, heart-motivated ministry by watching you?
Ministry involvement enhances biblical understanding.
Obviously the Bible is an important book, and we ought to interpret it in its literal, grammatical, and historical context. But understanding the Bible also involves a commitment to obey it. Jesus was careful to point this out to His over-educated critics, “If any man will do his [God’s] will, he shall know of the doctrine…” (John 7:17). As we put the Word of God to practice in our lives, the Lord brings His purposes into focus.
Loosely stated, one Chinese proverb says, “Tell me and I’ll forget. Show me and I may remember. Involve me and I’ll understand.”
You will forge long-lasting and valuable friendships.
One of the major fringe benefits of getting involved in our church is discovering genuine friendships. Those to whom we feel the closest in life are typically those with whom we work. Adam and Eve began their marriage side by side, working together—he, the garden worker, and she, his helper. The close connection we have with our coworkers often surpasses the ones we share with our own neighbors.
Some chapters of the Bible are more difficult to read than others. One of them is Romans 16, mainly because some of the names are impossible to pronounce! But what a tender passage it is. Paul takes time to assign value to his coworkers in ministry. Read it. Sense his heart.
Paul and Barnabas, Paul and Silas, Aquila and Priscilla, Peter and John—and the partnerships go on. Ministry partners are the best lifetime friends and great sources of encouragement.