So many people talk about wanting to launch their ministry.
My inbox is full. Full of prayer requests. Full of questions. Not theological ones. Just ones like, "why?" These questions come from hurting and worn out people. I have a goal of getting all my email answered in 24 hours. Lately I'm not meeting that goal 100% although I try.
Here's the truth.
You want a ministry? Stop chasing ministry and just meet needs. Suddenly one day after doing that for a while you'll wake up and realize you're already in the ministry.
Hurting people are everywhere. There are too many to keep track of...too many to count. Too many for pastors or their spouses to keep up with no matter how healthy or talented they are. And they were never meant to do all this anyway. Their role is to train others.
Stop for a moment and listen to the person who is asking questions that make you uncomfortable. Listen through the anger, the tears, maybe even the rage. Then say: "I don't know why."
They can handle it.
Real ministry doesn't have to have all the answers. In fact all the people who run around claiming they have all the answers are kind of scary.
Hurting people don't expect you to have all the answers. They just don't want to be alone.
Tell them you love them, and that you'll be praying. Promise to stand with them.
Then do that.
Give appropriate and meaningful touch when it's welcome.
Repeat some more.
Guess what? You're in the ministry.