This morning, the pastoral staff of our church met together at 5:30 AM, and began cooking breakfast for more than a dozen of our church members who work in financial planning, or as stock brokers, insurance, investments, etc. We wanted to do this as a way of sharing our concern and support for them during these up and down financially stressed times.
As a pastoral staff, we really do not get to do many things together, except on Sunday morning in worship. Although the day started very early . . . it was fun as we cooked together, making fun of each others "kitchen techniques" . . . discussing what to cook first, etc.
For the record . . . we ain't half bad cooks . . . as long as Nathan and Wren are in charge . . . and I keep to washing dishes!!
What made it both fun and reflective for me . . . is that we were starting our day serving others. Now, as I prepare to finish reading this morning the book of Matthew in the New Testament, I find that my service this morning will no doubt be the filter through which I read about Jesus and the Passion Week. "I came not to be served . . . but to serve!"
Whether it be an "ordinance" or "devotional" practice . . . occasions like this when I have the privilege of serving others early in the day seems to alter how I focus on the rest of the days activities . . . moving from thinking "What can I get out of this?" to "What can I do to help?"
That is a good thing!
Too often, ministry in a local congregational setting is more about management and supervising others, than it is acts of service.
I think this is a good time to re-read "The Servant Leader" by Blanchard and Hodges. As we begin to draw even closer focusing on Christmas and the Advent season . . . in these stressful times, whether we are leaders or not . . . our focus ought to be on serving others.
Ever forward . . . ><>
Note: Of course, I would start my reading today in Matthew 20. OK Lord, point taken!