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The Write Word

Ministry Close To Home


It blazed through the fog of time, bringing into focus the dusty pile in the corner of my mind.  Like a laser beam from Heaven, it cut through the scar tissue of pain, opening to my understanding the cause of the dull ache I've been feeling.  You know that feeling, that something isn't right.  Something vague, floating just beneath the surface of your consciousness.  Something I did not have time to address.

But while away on a business trip, away from the noise and chaos that comes with a 6 person household, my mind had time to actually address the things that were floating around in my heart.  And sizzle, singe, sear, the laser of conviction cut through and the sin was exposed.  I was flabbergasted.  Truly.  It was something I was completely unaware of.  And yet, somewhere down deep, on some level, I WAS aware of it.  And it had been festering there all along.  Causing pain.  Pain in turn causing sensitivity where there should have been none.

It was a thing from about 8 years ago.  An opportunity I did not take.  A good thing I did not do.  The Lord had placed in my path someone who needed some extra attention.  Some extra love.  I was the mother of 3 small children, wife of a full time pastor/full time grad student/part time youth ministry worker.  Life was full.  Life was busy. And looking back now, I realize that I completely missed it.  The opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus, overlooked because I was tooooo busy to see it.  I missed the still small voice because my ears were filled with the clamor and commotion of my life.  Because I did not MAKE time to be still, to clear my heart/head in the presence of quiet time with the Father.

Forgive me Lord.  Forgive me for recognizing ministry in what Missionaries do overseas, but not recognizing the mission field in my neighborhood.  For recognizing ministry in what Orphanages do, but not seeing the need in the lonely child who lived next door.  For recognizing the ministry to the elderly in a nursing home, but not seeing the lonely lady who lived down the block.  For recognizing the ministry of feeding the hungry in Africa, but ignoring the hunger in the ill fed hearts of my children's playmates.  For not seeing the opportunity to be more than a check-writer, a dollar giver, a financier of helping hands ministry.  For not BEING a helping hand.  For not doing good, because I was too busy being busy.

I have moved from that neighborhood.  I am no longer able to do the good I could/should have there.  But I still live IN a neighborhood.  I still have the ability to be a smiling face, an offer of a weeding hand, a giver of baked bread, a giver of a vase of flowers, an offer to help.  I can, still, be the hands and feet of Christ.  If I'm not too busy.  If I "know to do good" and choose to "do it not", then I sin.  Still.

So I choose not to.  Not to be too busy weeding my garden, too busy doing fun things, to busy keeping up with the blogs I love to read, too busy doing Church work that I don't do Gods work.  Ouch.  Too busy being the Bride of Christ, that I forget about being the servant of Christ.

How about you?  Still singing "Jesus use me, surely there's a work that I can do"?  Well, He wants to.  Right were you are.  So fire up the oven, get out the garden gloves, fill up the stew pot, put on the coffee, grab the pruning sheers, find a way, MAKE a way.  To be the hands and feet of Jesus.   

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