Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Ministry in the Mundane

This past week I have probably spent an average of 2-3 hours on laundry. Yes you read that right, 2-3 hours. That’s 6 TV shows. That’s a full movie, credits included. That’s A LOT OF TIME. Now if I was to multiply that by 52 weeks that equals 104 hours and that means I spend on average almost a week out of each year doing laundry. That’s a lot of laundry and it almost has me convinced that there are other people living under my roof that I have not tyet discovered.  There is a good chance they are under the kids beds because there is no telling what is hiding under there, or growing under there. At this point ignorance is bliss for me.
Ive washed dishes, cleaned bathrooms, swept floors and vacuumed just to have to redo it all a couple days later. My timetable during this stage of life is either: “ Get there so early that you can help set up or get there so late you are helping eat the left over food and helping them clean up.”  Its enough to drive a girl insane.

With all that time being spent doing the mundane and mind-numbing chores I can either choose to pout and dream of the days when I would come home from teaching and feel like I had accomplished something that day or I can choose to focus on how I can be present and find ministry in the mundane moments that make up my days during this season of life.
Working allowed me to feel like I was making a difference because often you saw the fruit of your labor and you often saw the results of your hard work and effort. 
That’s not always the case now.
I must discipline my mind to come to the Lord with Thanksgiving. To talk to him and ask him how I can serve him through the monotony of my day. How can I glorify him in the mudane?

Like many of you reading this we have desires and dreams that may not be able to fulfilled during this season of life. Or forget being fulfilled, we are in a waiting period where we aren’t even able to pursue those dreams and desires. We may have these visions of ministry, of being world changers, of making a difference, of being out in the “world” working yet right now we have them tucked away behind the piles of laundry, or dirty diapers or under the projects that we are just “helping” our kids with. ( Lets get honest folks most of the time its 90% your work and 10% their work if they are lucky) We’ve tucked them away and started to plead with the Lord for our purpose and direction. I truly believe God wants to share in our dreams and passions, yet, we are missing something if this is our mindset. Our Lord is a gentle and loving father who has ordained this time and place for us to be. ( Acts 17:26)  We can trust not only his time table but his process to bring about his purpose. We can come to him and still give him glory and minister to others throughout our mundane periods of life.  We must realize that in this time period THIS is our purpose and the direction of our lives. We must choose to be present and proactive in the here and now. Put yourself in the shoes of the Israelites as they marches around Jericho. How monotonous would that have been? Day in and Day out they marched around the city, going in circles. If they had chosen to complain they wouldn't have experienced Gods victory. And maybe just maybe the lessons he was teaching them in the mundane times of marching prepared them for what was to come. Maybe it was during those times of the same 'ole same 'ole God was whispering to their souls. I mean if i was them, honestly there would be days that I would want to quit. When I would have thought, " is this really worth it? Why are we doing this?" Yet our God had a plan and just as the Israelites would learn and be a part of then we must see and recognize that in the times of the mundane, in the circling of our "Jerichos" he is forming our character and forging our trust in Him. We have a paradise promised to us but we must be faithful in trusting in Him and his timing to receive it and choose to be a part of the miracles along the way. We must remember that in times or waiting, in periods of monotony our character is being built and prepared for what lies ahead. We must realize that our ministry is here and now, being entrusted with what we have been given. How will we choose to respond? 

Maybe you are a working mom. Maybe youre saying, “Lauren, I am in the world, I am pursuing my passions, I am a working mom”. Then I encourage you to still come to the Lord and ask him what ministry he wants you to have during this time. Ive been there, Ive been a working mom and I know there are still tasks that have to be done day in and day out no matter if you are at home all day or just part of the day. There are still opportunities to look outside of ourselves and pour into those in our household and those in our circles of influence at work. 

So as cheesy as it may sound lets seek for a way to serve while doing laundry and doing expense reports. We have a ministry in the monotony of our days both at work and at home. Lets minister to our children, to our husbands, to the women around us who are a stage or two behind us. There is ministry in the mundane, lets come to the Lord and ask him to open our eyes and hearts to how he is working around us and how we can join in.