Recently, I was having breakfast with a friend of mine, when he started talking about recent opportunities that he’s had to minister to people because of his work as a web developer.
(Paraphrasing) He said that he once envied people who were paid by a church to serve others. He thought they had it made because they could spend all of their time serving people and didn’t have to worry about supporting their family.
But, now, he says, he’s learning that he has opportunities to serve people every day through his work as a web developer – people who would never seek counsel from someone who was paid by a church. But, these people are willing to talk with him because they know him and have worked with him and trust him and don’t think he’s just trying to make another convert.
Sure, the people who would say that are wrong about the vast number of paid professional ministers who truly care about people and want to help them. But, the perspective is there. My friend does not have to deal with that because they respect him as a web developer and friend, and he’s able to serve them and introduce them to Jesus Christ.
Of course, this “minister of web development” isn’t the first or only person who has told me recently about opportunities that God has given them to serve others within their spheres of influence that are outside the normal “church” spheres. The exciting thing (to me) is that more and more people are recognizing that God has called them, ordained them, and gifted them as ministers wherever they live, work, shop, play, etc. And, more and more people are taking this calling serious and are beginning to serve people in their neighborhoods and workplaces and schools etc.
Now, my web developing friend says that those who are paid by a church should envy him. He gets to serve others while doing what he likes, and he doesn’t have to deal with being paid by a church. (I think that last part was said in jest… sorta.)
So, what about you? Where has God placed you to serve others? How are you taking advantage of those opportunities?