9 Feb 2018
I want to give up children’s ministry.
One day, you will say this. You will start by saying it to yourself. Perhaps it will be on a Monday morning as you heave your weary body out the door to another week. Perhaps it will be on a Friday night when dinner is a piece of toast before heading out with a handful of young people for an evening that feels only vaguely God-related.
Perhaps it will be one evening, whilst snipping up another paper plate or in another meeting about a meeting about a training, vision, planning group. Perhaps it will be as you see your friends' posting their amazing lives on social media.
If the reason why you began is not strong enough; If the reason to carry on is not clear enough; you will give up.
You may start by just putting less effort in. You may just opt out of church here and there. Or a real resentment may begin to grow, first of church, then of Christ.
What is the solution?
You could whinge to anyone who will listen? Or you could struggle on quietly competing with your Christian brothers and sisters for who is most tired ‘for the Lord’? Who is putting in the most hours, bearing the most strain? No, ministry is not a contest. There is no winner. Only losers, if that is where your heart is.
No, there has to be something better. Our Heavenly Father does understand, if only we would listen to Him first.
“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” Galatians 6:9
Well, you are tired. If you’re tired of doing good things – that’s alright. If you’re just tired, from not enough sleep, from watching Netflix late into the night, from never taking a day off, then please sleep more. You are not the Messiah. Rest in Him. Sleep.
Paul says that if we don’t give up, there is a harvest of blessing. What is that? A big car, a fab house, a sponsorship deal, better health, bigger wealth? A life worth making others jealous? No! Paul has already told us:
“Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father.” Galatians 1:3-4
You are rescued from this present nonsense with all its filters and fake dreams to be at home with the Father, to be adopted as his children. The sofa on Friday evening is not what we were rescued for. The greatest of times with your mates is not actually where you truly belong. You belong with the father who made you, this is home, this is life and you can play your part in bringing many of His kids to be home with you. The forever family. At home. With our Father.
So tired friend, limping leader, weary worker – cling fast to the, “Why?”
Why am I here? Why am I doing this?
Galatians 2:20 is the perfect summary
“I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
You are doing what you can, only because he is at work in you.
He was crucified – the son of God loved me and gave himself for me – this is my why, this is forever our why.
Your old you, that only cared about only you, is dead. You now see Him. You are new. He lives in you. But you are still “in the body”. You are not who you wish you were. You do not have the energy you wish you had. You do not have the gifts others have. You do not have the time for every person you care for. Instead, you live by faith in the son of God. You trust him that your efforts are enough. That you are enough. That He is enough. And when you have tried and trusted, you stop. You rest. You offer your efforts to your Lord and you pray for Him to be glorified. And He will be.
So don’t give up. Keep doing what is good. Wait for your harvest of blessing.
You’re not done. One day you will be.
Guest blog by Amy Smith (Children’s Worker at GraceChurch, Halewood).
You could use some more encouragement? Click to read why Amy says, that As a Christian, you are a hire car