Let me ask you this: Who are you prioritizing in your ministry? Let’s ask an even broader question: Who are the most important people for you to minister to? Who are the most important people for the Church to minister to?
I believe that there are certainly arguments to be made on what people group need to be shown the love of Christ.
James 1:27 tells us that “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction…”
In Luke 3, we see Jesus calling us to take care of the poor, saying “…Whoever has two tunics is to share with him who has none, and whoever has food is to do likewise…”
Jesus puts a great emphasis on children in Matthew 18:5 saying “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me…”
A common theme that you may be noticing is that we are called to take care of the weak, the helpless, and the less fortunate. We can clearly see that we should be ministering to orphans, widows, children, the homeless, the hungry, and all of those who are lacking.
But who is most important for YOU to minister to? Who is most important for YOU to be showing the love of Christ? What types of people should YOU be looking out for?
Zig Zigler said “If you aim a nothing, you will hit it every time”. We must identify who we supposed to minister to. If we can figure that out, then we will find ourselves showing the love of Christ more often! So, to answer the question, “Who is the most important person for you to minister to?”, I propose this answer:
The most important person for you to minister to is: whoever is right in front of you.
You may ask, “but what about the needy and the helpless?” To that I would tell you “Show me someone who is not in need of the love of Christ”. If you are a human being on this planet, you NEED Christ’s love. Everyone is in desperate need of Him as Rock, Stronghold, Peace, Truth, and Life. Yes, people do have physical needs and some people are better off than others. However, everyone has spiritual needs that can only be met by Jesus Christ.
We should still seek out opportunities to serve orphans, widows, children, the homeless, and hungry people. However, this does not mean that we put our ministry on pause until we are a part of a church sanctioned ministry event! We must be loving others daily. We are not guaranteed to make it to the next church trip to the homeless shelter, so we must make the most out of our ministry now!
Here are three tips to take this concept and put it into action:
1. BUILD A MINISTRY MINDSET Before we seek ways to show others the love of Christ, we must first receive what we are trying to give to others. When was the last time that you took a break from the busyness of the day to ponder on this thought: how much does God love me?
If you want to minister to others, you must be ministering to yourself daily by reminding yourself of God’s love, provision, guidance, mercy, grace, and protection. If you aren’t fully falling in love with God each and every single day, then it is much harder to share that love with others. Beginning each day in the Bible and in prayer may sound like such an obvious and common piece of advice, but it is absolutely vital to your ministry. Colossians 3 tells us to “set our minds on the things that are above…” We do this by starting in the Word and starting in prayer.
2. MINISTER FROM A PLACE OF POWER Imagine that you work at a very large office with hundreds of employees. One day the CEO gives you his credit card and tells you to buy Christmas presents for the whole company. You are given an unlimited budget and can go wild! You head to the store and begin purchasing things. However, instead of using the credit card your boss has given you, you are using your own cash. Eventually, you run out of your own money and can no longer afford to complete this task.
What do you think your boss would say to you if you came back to him in this state? Obviously, your boss would ask you why you were using your own cash in the first place when he already gave you his own credit card.
In the same way, we are not being asked to do ministry in our own strength. If you have not been relying on the word of God and prayer to guide your ministry, then you are just like the employee who was given the boss’ credit card but used their own cash. We must always rely on Christ to be our source of strength and hope. If we rely on Him and trust in His word, then we will not be lead astray. Find your rest, purpose, and courage in the finished work of Jesus on the cross!
3. MAKE MINISTRY A PRIORITY At first, ministry may seem like a very daunting and intimidating task. There may be many doubts and anxieties that flood you mind when faced with the idea of sharing your faith with someone.
“What if I say the wrong things?” “What if they reject what I have to say?” “What if this ruins my relationship with them?”
Though these thoughts are valid, we cannot allow them to stop us from doing the work that Jesus has called us to. The stakes are too high to allow fear to control us! So, to combat this fear, we must make ministry not only a priority in our lives, but a habit.
Set yourself an obtainable goal: I will show the love of Jesus to at least one person today.
You can do this in a lot of ways!
Pay for the next person in line’s coffee at Starbucks
Verbally show someone your appreciation
Offer to help someone with a task or project
Let your spouse know that you are grateful for them
Tell your coworker about what your pastor talked about at church last Sunday
Don’t let the good deed stop at just being a good deed. Use this as an opportunity to share your faith!
WRAPPING IT UP The most important person for you to minister to is whoever is right in front of you. Are you ministering to your coworkers? Your family? Your customers? The people at the grocery store?
Every day can be full of ministry if you seek out people to show the love of Christ to.