“We are looking for volunteers for the _______ ministry.”
If you’ve been to church for more than three weeks you’ve likely encountered some sort of announcement asking for help from the church to serve. We understand why: churches have a number of ministries that require volunteers to coordinate service together.
When asked to serve, we may tend to think, “Why should I?” And as we begin to process the question, we remind ourselves that we are already quite busy. Everyone’s busy—or at least we think we are. It’s so easy to dismiss needs like this.
I think the line of thinking that says, “Why should I?” is unhelpful. It starts with us at the center rather than the needs of others in our church family. There may be legitimate reasons why we can’t serve, but I fear that we often quickly settle for convenient excuses that secure our comfort rather than our sacrifice.
Reframing the Question
What if we reframed the question? What if the request for help and service began not with us but the need? What if we said, “This is a need in my church. Why not me?”
It helps me to remember that part of what demonstrates our new life in Christ is the good works we do when we serve God. “We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works” (Ephesians 2:10).
Imagine if the needs in the church were gobbled up like free tickets to see the local team? Here in Boston, few would give up the chance to watch the Red Sox or the Patriots. We love to enter into the joy of participating in the event. We may not think of mowing the lawn, cleaning bathrooms, or serving in the children’s ministry this way, but it is. We enter into the joy of the event, and reflect God’s character in the service of Christ and His church.
May we gobble up these opportunities to serve because they are occasions to boast in Christ. Instead of thinking, “Why me?” ask, “Why not me?” May we be more inclined to joyfully serve Jesus and His people.
—Erik Raymond, condensed