I’ve had some unique ministry opportunities in my path during the last several weeks. Interestingly enough, none of them happened within the walls of the church I serve. They all happened within the context of my job in a retail tax office. I’ve been presented with opportunities to pray for and with people who are grieving, facing cancer, working through family issues, and I had the opportunity to be prayed for when I was struggling, too. Each opportunity was unexpected, not planned and could have been easily overlooked.
It is certainly another testimony to the fact that God does not confine Himself or His work inside the four walls of a church, but He is at work everywhere. We choose each day to find the places where He is working and join Him. In the same context, people needing the touch of God are everywhere. The question is will we open our eyes wide enough to be the hands and feet of Christ in the world? Just as Jesus meets us where we are, we must meet others at their point of need. That may mean offering a prayer, a shoulder to cry on, or just the realization that there is someone in this rather “taxing” world that genuinely cares.
The moment that struck me as most poignant was when most of our office staff was gathered in a circle, hands entwined, praying for a dear man who had recently lost his young son in a tragic accident. Yes, we were gathered around him to offer strength and comfort, but each of us in that circle received something in return. We saw a demonstration of the “peace that passes all understanding” in the face of this grieving father. He understood that the present suffering was only for a short time and that joy would be his again. He was an encouragement to us all. He was a reaffirmation to me that God uses “all things” to work good through our lives.
So, yes, the first four months of this year have been stressful, long days, sometimes feeling overwhelmed and overworked, but they were so much more. They were a real chance to fulfill my ministry role each day, looking for where I could offer peace and love to someone else. Trust me, I failed more times than I succeeded, but I praise God for the moments of success.
Where do you see God working today? Join Him.