This week I am reminded of my mission and calling. I am meant to be a servant to the world. I am called to share the Good News to a world in desperate need of God. That is my calling in a nutshell. What happens when the tables are turned and those who are called to serve become those who are served?
My youngest was chosen by the Make a Wish Foundation to receive a trip to Disneyworld. We were amazed at the kindness so wondrously shown to us. We did not earn it, nor did we seek it out. It just happened.
As we are preparing for the trip, several questions come to mind. Are we really qualified to take a trip such as this? Who are we to accept such extravagant generosity? Aren’t we supposed to offer the gift and not be the receivers of a gift?
When my wife was pregnant with my youngest son, the end of her pregnancy was very difficult. She was in the hospital for complete bed rest for the last few weeks of her pregnancy. While my wife was in the hospital a lady called me from the church that I was serving and simply asked me “How many meals would I need prepared per week?” I explained to her that I knew how to cook and that we would be fine. Her response caught me completely off-guard. She said, “So Joe. When I am standing before God, and the Almighty asks me if I ministered to people, my response will be no, because Joe would not let me?” I accused her of not playing fair and made arrangements for the ministry to serve my family. She was a tough cookie!
Most of our ministry is about serving, but we sometimes forget that it is also about relationships. There are times in any relationship that we must give richly and deeply from our hearts. There are also times that we must receive the gift. My family knows that our Disney gift is God breathed and God led. There is no other way around it. Do I then reject the gift that God gives through the ministries of my fellow brothers and sisters in the faith? I think not.
Today, we prepare to leave. As we embark on our great adventure, we will always give thanks for what God allows us to share with each other. Whatever role we are in, caretaker or caregiver, we will lift up the name of Christ. It is through God that we truly experience life. In the end it is not about the gift, but about sharing the Spirit.