Too Much of a Good Thing
Chapter four of Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World is full of stories about knowing when to say “yes” and when to say “no”. Taking on too many projects is never a good idea even if they are all worthwhile projects. Weaver mentions that she likes to jump into ministry whenever she feels passionate about a project, but sometimes all God really wants her to do is pray for the right person to step up and take on that project. She says that taking on a job that was not intended for her causes her to feel stressed out and is probably robbing someone else of the chance to be blessed by that responsibility.
This idea is what struck me most in this chapter. It is easy for me to identify what I am passionate about in terms of ministry, but it is not always easy for me to know what I should do about it! I have two big examples from my own church experience that illustrate this point. More than anything it shows that I really don’t know what I am doing and desperately need to learn how to seek God in these decisions. I believe that Weaver will be shedding more light on this later in the book. Let’s hope so!
Example #1. I attend a very small church, and it is hard to get children’s programs up and running. This is my number one interest in ministry. I love working with the kids and I think I am good at it! I decided to start a Vacation Bible School one summer a few years ago. The first summer went well. It was a good first run. We had fun and learned a lot about how to improve the program for the following year. The second summer was awesome. We had a bigger group of kids and everything ran smoothly. We even had a great response from the congregation at the end of the week. I had people asking if they could be volunteers for the next summer. I was very excited about the response and doing it again the next year. The third summer nobody signed up. There was little to no interest from the kids or the volunteers. I have no idea what happened, but we haven’t had a summer VBS since.
Example #2. My husband and I tried to start a young families group at our church. The intent was to build relationships among the young kids, so they would be excited about getting together as a youth group as they got older. We have a problem with teenagers disappearing at our church, so we thought this might be a fun solution. It started off great. Everyone loved the idea and we had a good number of people coming to our monthly events. But like the VBS program, this fizzled out. It was much more gradual, but with the same result. The group is no longer meeting and we are left wondering what we are going wrong.
Today I don’t have answers. Only questions. This chapter made me think about my place in the church and what jobs I should and should not be taking on. Hopefully as I keep reading and learning how to seek God’s will I will come up with some answers!