Josh Medlock, Director of Student Ministries
ne of the top three questions I get all the time is this:
“What do you do?”
This question often comes up when discussing my employment and where I work.
I used to tell people, “I work for the church.” That was it.
I said this because, when you tell people, “I am the Director of Student Ministries at First United Methodist Church Garland,” their response is usually something like, “Oh, so you are a pastor?”
Then I have to explain that I am not a pastor, since I am not ordained.
Which often leads to a discussion about the difference between a pastor and a minister and why that matters.
Much easier to say, “I work for the church.”
Truth is, if you are reading this, you probably also work for the church.
When we join the church, we take vows that state we will support our church with our prayers, our presence, our gifts, our service, and our witness.
But I am not sure I like the phrase “working for the church.”
When I think about the way that sounds, to me, it sounds like I am working for a place.
I guess it might be better to say, “working in the church?”
But then what does that mean? Still sounds like I am working for someone or for an entity.
I don’t work for either. I work for God. It really is that simple.
I do not work at First United Methodist Garland because of the entity, its people, or how much I get paid.
I work here because I work for God. I feel called to ministry in a way that allows me to serve and utilize my gifts.
In the last year and half, I haven’t been happy about needing to use ALL of my gifts.
I didn’t realize when I left maintenance to work in ministry that I would be working maintenance as part of the ministry.
That is a real wordy way of saying I didn’t leave maintenance to go work maintenance. Yet here I am.
Was I bitter? Yep. Was I frustrated? You bet.
But I realize that this is all part of the ministry I am called to do.
I vowed to serve with my gifts. That means all the gifts I possess that God can use.
I don’t get to pick and choose. Lord knows I have tried. Let me assure you, that typically does not work out well in the end.
So why am I telling you this? And what is the point?
We all are called to serve God with our gifts. What is your gift?
Can you sing? There is a robe and folder with your name on it waiting for you.
Are you artistic? We have plenty of ideas for newsletters, posters and media that could use a professional touch.
Do you like to get your hands dirty?
Come help me in the elevator pit one day cleaning out debris and oil.
Push a broom, vacuum a room or two. Work in the flower beds. Clean a few glass doors or windows.
Maybe physical isn’t your thing. But everyone can serve God.
Your gift may be the gift of prayer.
Your gift may be, well, gifts. Perhaps you have been blessed and are in the position to bless others financially.
We are called to serve. We vow to serve. We are built to serve.
I need to get over myself sometimes and realize that, even though I may not like it, I am good at fixing stuff.
And if that is where God needs me, then I should probably listen and get to work.
It is all part of the ministry.
I hope and pray that all of you continue to find ways to be part of the ministry.