By Contributing Writer, Leigh Ellen.
As a child and even into my teenage years, I remember going to church with my mom on Saturday nights to fold bulletins. The smell of the printed paper, the sound of the paper cutter, and trying to avoid paper cuts were all too familiar to me. I use to dread this. I wondered why in the world my mom would leave the comfort of our home and come to church when it was pitch black outside to fold paper.
Yesterday, there I was with a baby on my hip carefully transferring cookies from the cookie sheet to the plate (I should really invest in a cooling rack). All while trying to keep little hands from sneaking a cookie. I needed exactly 48 servings, which meant no one could eat any. This took a lot of self-control from all of us!
I had spent the morning baking cookies for our BBQ fundraiser at church. It reminded me of the times I saw my parents commit to helping out in the church. I get it now. I understand why after working long days as a teacher my mother would stay at church for hours teaching, cleaning, and preparing for the days to come.
Our Roles in the Church
This memory got me thinking about the people in my church and their roles in this fundraiser.
We have the women who don’t have children or have grown children that dedicate their time and energy to organize the fundraiser and prepare plates.
There are the men and women like my husband that either work at home or are off work and deliver plates to the businesses in town.
And we have women like myself that will commit to make the baked goods and sides that go into the plates.
We all have a role in the church. Just because we are moms and we are busy caring for everyone else, doesn’t mean we are too busy to serve. It’s tempting to compare ourselves to others, the ones that go above and beyond for the church. But no matter how much free time we have, we can find some way to contribute.
Our churches need our unique talents and abilities to be complete.
“For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.” 1 Corinthians 12:12
At times I want to complete my tasks without interruptions and I want to finish them with perfection. But so often I’m left feeling convicted. What am I teaching my children? How will they learn to serve in the church if I don’t let them be involved?
It’s crucial that we involve our children in the church. Just like we have roles, so do they.
Training them to enjoy serving alongside with other believers will have benefits. Also, my children need the influence of other Christians that aren’t their parents to help guide them spiritually.
It’s Not About Good Works
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:8-10
Even though we have been called to serve in the church, it’s not about us. It’s not a “look at what I’m doing and give me a pat on the back” calling. It’s about surrendering your time and your energy to reach others.
It’s about allowing God to work through you without anything in return. We are choosing to be wise with our time when we commit to serving.
We should always strive to show unbelievers that we are willing to work hard to share the good news with them.
So, maybe your children keep you busy or your job requires long hours, know that you have a purpose and role in the church. You were designed to minister in some special way to those around you.
Go out into the world and be the light today. Show others His goodness and never believe the lie that you are too busy or too tired.
What talents or hobbies do you have that could be used to serve others?