Yesterday a friend said to me,
“I’m busy. I’m gone all day and it takes an hour each way to get to work. But I’d like to do something that’s ministry.”
Ministry is a church word. It means that a person wants to do something around church, related to church. It usually means being a Sunday school teacher or being an usher or shoveling the driveway or being on a committee.
I don’t like that meaning. I like to push people out of the building, help them work in lives.
I said, “What delights you? What do you love to do?”
“Sleep,” my friend said, smiling. She’s got good reason. She works hard and has much on her heart.
“If we ever start a nap ministry, I’ll call you,” I said. “Do you like to send cards?”
“I used to.”
“Send cards to two people this week and then ask me the question again next week.”
We agreed on two names of people who could benefit from her touch and I walked away.
In the past I would have said, “let me think about it and get back to you.” In the past I would have said, “let’s look at a brochure.” In the past I would have taken the burden of involvement on my shoulders.
But the most important thing for her to do is to actually do something. This week. That will help someone else. In her timeframe.
I think that having written about Switch the day before helped. Scripting the critical moves in this case meant helping my friend move from a vague “I want to do something” to “here’s what I can do this week.”
Make it clear. Make it simple. Make it doable.
Then help someone do something.
Also see Put it on the list