Ministry: It could happen to you!

Lunch hour of late has been a time for me to get away from the computer for a bit and run errands. I always manage to grab a little something to eat as well. Hey, that’s why we call it the “lunch hour”. However, in the midst of the hustle and bustle of getting ready for a new school year, I have been doing more running than eating which can sometimes be a good thing.  It is amazing to me how when we least expect it an opportunity for ministry appears right in front of us.

I was doing my usual running and the Dollar General was my last stop before I had to get back to the office.  As usual, It was crowded.  I grabbed what I needed as quickly as I could and headed for the check out line pausing ever so briefly by the candy. (I am such a “sucker” for M & M’s. he he!)  Because of my brief pause, a lady came flying in from the right and scooted in front of me in line.   Though I was in a hurry, I remembered to smile.  Seemingly, out of nowhere, she began sharing with me about her life and her children. We chatted for about a minute when she began to pour out all of the things she had been going through in the last year. This included illness, family problems, her husband’s arrest, and her 18 month old going to heaven.  She wasn’t out for sympathy or for something from me. She just needed someone to listen.  How quickly a 5 minute stop turned into an opportunity for ministry.  God put us together at the right place and at the right time. She was a lady who needed some ministering, and God allowed me to be a help.

So many times I find myself not ready for such an opportunity. What would have happened if I had gotten in the the line grumbling and complaining about the crowd or how I was going to be late?  (I have done this before a lot more than I would care to admit.)  I would have missed such a great blessing. 

The Lord brought this verse to my mind,  “Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” (Colossians 4:6)  Before this verse meant to me that when there is a conflict with someone I need to speak with grace and understanding or when I am speaking with a non-christian I will not discredit  or turn someone from Christ.  Yet the verse very simply says, “Let your speech be always with grace.”  I need to “always” practice gracious speech.  When I think over a normal day in my life and start analysing my speech, I am convicted that my speech is not “always with grace”.  I am so grateful that my speech did not in any way dissuade or discourage this lady. 

I am thankful that God showed me again the importance of being ready at all times for ministry. You never know that the next person you encounter may be the one God has placed in your path at just the right moment for you to minister and help. 

When our speech is gracious, we might find ourselves with more and more opportunities to reach out to those around us in our homes, in our churches, in our communities, and even in our “Dollar General”.

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15 thoughts on “Ministry: It could happen to you!

  1. That’s such a good post and good reminder. I came to that place a long time ago that I wouldn’t be in a hurry or be impatient in line. And it often does give opportunity to lend a listening ear.

    It is good to hear from you again.

  2. Hey Amy,

    Good Post, I often tell folks to go ahead cause I’m to old and slow . I have a good time when I visit the bread store on wednesday 10% off day for senoir citizens .
    I have enjoyed many trips and recieved a blessing myself , just for the conservations I get into ?

    Blessings.
    Ron.

  3. Amy,
    This is a great reminder for us all to always be ready to show another the love of Christ. Sometimes it pulls us out of our comfort zones…that is a good thing!

  4. jel, thanks for stopping by. You never know I might post that picture of the sunset soon.

    Beverly, Thanks for the encouragement. Why I get in a hurry I will never know! If I would stop I know I would be a lot less stressed in the stores.
    You’re right. You never know when you might be that listening ear.

    Ron, I know anyone who talks to you will receive a blessing and a good laugh. I know I always enjoy talking to you.

    Christy, Jumping out of your comfort zone is indeed scary, but so rewarding. Thanks for coming by you are a blessing to me.

    Bro. Tim, Thanks as always. You are an encouragement to me. I enjoyed your post/thoughts on God’s deliverance of Noah and his family. Thanks for sharing it.

  5. I saw your comment on Randy Alcorn’s blog and thought I’d stop by. This post-it’s timely for me because I think I’ve had a wrong understanding of it too.

    What do you think “grace” sounds like? Do you think it’s the words we utter, the way we say them or the love of Jesus that-hopefully-is behind them, that constitute graceful speech?

    I’d love to hear your thoughts 🙂

  6. This is such a great post Amy. I find that I am quite often in a rush that I may not be available for people who need ministering when I am busy. You’ve set such a great example, and it’s so cool that you did’t forget to smile ;)Thank you for this fabulous reminder of the importance of being ready to listen, minister, heop and share God’s love to the people around us always.

  7. Leane, Welcome to my blog. That is a great question. I think our speech should reflect the love of Christ in our hearts. I am reminded of a fountain. What is in the inter working of the fountain is going to spray out of the top. I need constantly guard my speech/tongue. In Psalm 141:3, the Psalmist wants the Lord to keep watch over the door of his lips. I also need have a heart that is right before God. What is on the inside will come out. Love for God should be our motivation to speak in a way that encourages. I hope this answers your question. I am planning to do a follow up post on this subject. Thank you for stopping by. You are welcome anytime!

    Kitty, Thanks for commenting. I have to watch myself so I will not be so busy that I forget that people are more important than my agenda for the day. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  8. I love this post. I hope to have many of those opportunities. 🙂
    I also have faith that when they occur, God will give me the words needed to open the door. Quite frankly, I believe there is always an open door when we listen closely.

    Many blessings to y’all.

    God’s Grace.

  9. Corry, You are absolutely right. When we tune our listening in to him, He will show us the open door of ministry. I am so glad you came by. God’s grace to you too.

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