Vacation Bible School in this week, so that’s at the front of my brain, and will likely be the subject of the posts. Several years ago, I got put in as director. While I love VBS, love leading the music, love being around the kids, I hate being in charge of things. Hate it. Leadership is not my gift. Administration, I can do. I’m a great assistant director, but our church is small and we don’t have that luxury, so here I am in my fifth year as director.
My point is God often takes us outside our comfort zone to stretch and grow our faith. However, He’s not going to take us outside our ‘gift zone’. How can you tell the difference? Ask God to show you your heart as you pray and study. Ask yourself these questions as a guide.
- Am I passionate about what I’m doing? Does it bring me joy or dread?
- Does it cause unhealthy stress?
- Do I procrastinate (more than usual) with this task?
- How do I respond to others when I am in this role? Am I irritable, or defensive?
- If I stop doing it, do I miss it?
- Do I have ideas for ‘next year’?
- Does it help or hurt the cause of Christ to be miserable in His service?
- Is this ministry for Him or for me?
Tough questions, I know, and the answers aren’t any easier. Several years ago, I stopped doing youth ministry with my husband after more than ten years. My stress level dropped, but the tip-off to me that I had made the right decision was that I didn’t miss it. I still cared deeply for the kids, but I wasn’t visualizing new program ideas or study topics or outings.
As a body, we tend to suffer from “Institutional Ministry Inertia” where we get stuck doing the same thing forever. We’re sure the roof will fall in if we stop doing it or worse, that somebody will think we’re unspiritual or unfaithful. If we’re in ministries that God didn’t call us to, and didn’t gift us for, then we are unfaithful stewards of His gifts.