he says: find your niche

>> January 28, 2009

This is the final installment in a series of posts by PH Trevan Osborn. Read his other 2 posts, here and here.

You are your husband’s greatest asset in the church. At least, you can and should be. There’s no doubt that in my church, my wife has been a great help in breaking down barriers with people who I’d have a hard time reaching and revealing a heart for ministry all members should have. The church probably won’t shed a tear when I’m gone but the same can’t be said for my wife. They love her.

The best thing she has done is found her place to serve in the church. She co-leads our hospitality team and helps out in other ministries when possible. She hasn’t accepted all the roles people have tried to place on her but she’s serving in a meaningful way that everyone has noticed.

There is a new generation of PWs, who frankly, can’t sing, play piano, or lead women’s ministry as has traditionally been expected. I’m not asking you to become that and by all means, don’t allow the church to dump all kinds of ministry in your lap. However, your service, or lack thereof, has a huge impact on how members perceive not only your husband but the church as a whole.

Find your unique niche in ministry and serve with commitment and passion. It’s not just important for helping you husband’s ministry, but will strengthen your own spiritual experience.

What ministry are you serving in now? Have you felt too much pressure to serve? How have you helped the church have realistic expectations? Anyone out there taking a rebellious stand when it comes to serving, and not serving simply because it's expected?


Sarah January 29, 2009 at 10:12 AM  

I play the piano poorly, sing only when I'm asked, and am neither a teacher nor a nurse. In our very first church I got roped into teaching the children's study class for 1st and 2nd graders almost immediately after we arrived. I enjoy kids, but let's just say it was a bad fit. A wise older PW soon whispered some advice my ear.

"When you get to a new church, don't take any jobs or positions or responsibilities for the first 6 months," she said. "Just get to know people at first, and show them you love them."

I decided to follow her advice. It's kept me from getting drafted for jobs I don't want, helps me avoid being sucked into politics or accidentally overstepping into someone else's territory, and lets me take time to get settled in and learn about the new congregation.

Also, by the time 6 months has passed, I'm usually feeling totally useless and very eager to get involved with something - and by then I know what's available and interesting to me.

Anonymous,  January 29, 2009 at 10:45 PM  

I echo Sarah's thoughts above... we just moved from a church that was my home for 22 years... my husband as children's pastor there and we had a lot of responsibility and I did a lot... I love ministry and get the biggest high from talking it, breathing it, learning it, doing it... but coming into a new church I knew that a) God was calling me to scale back so that my family could have more of my thoughts, time, and concern... and b) I had an opportunity to pick and choose what I jumped into.

So, like Sarah, I just went. I was, and am, in a Sunday school class for the first time in 9 years with a group of fabulous ladies... I'm in a worship service, I did join the choir, but I'm able to sit and worship... I've been able to just experience church.

However, I'm itching like crazy and I've slowly said yes to a couple things... I am singing in the choir (I'm so not a solo person but I do love singing in worship...), I am on the rotation to play piano once a month on Sunday mornings (funny huh?! Pretty stereotypical...), and other than sitting in on some meetings with Stephen, I'm not plugged into anything right now and there's such potential and pull...

I must say to though, when Stephen was hired the committee told me point blank that they were hiring Stephen, not me... not a decorating committee chairperson, not a Bible study leader, etc. and it was one of the most freeing feelings.

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