Minister to others

I had been feeling discouraged. I knew I needed to confront a certain person about my feelings. Avoid it – that’s what I wanted to do. I bickered with my husband all morning. Actually the whole morning was stressful, rushed and disorganized. I fought internally about it. I continued to sort out my thoughts and feelings. Why was I feeling this way? What exactly was my hurt? What was at the core? Why was an emotional wall built up?

With the morning being so stressful and rushed and, of course, me wanting to ignore the whole situation, honestly, I didn’t even want to go to church. And I probably wouldn’t have except my parents were coming to this church service. (God knew I needed to be there!)

I prayed off and on all morning, really all week. I prayed for wisdom. On the way to church I said to my husband, “Pastor has said we shouldn’t go to church to be ministered to or to be served but to serve and minister to others.” I didn’t know how that would apply to this situation because confronting someone isn’t always welcomed with a “hey – bring it on!”

I prayed for an opportunity with this person. God arranged it.

I will spare the details but this person and I had a chance to talk – really talk, which never happens. We discussed our struggles and feelings. Things were not what they seemed – rarely are they. The distance we felt, the wall we built up, had nothing to do with each other – that is to say, we hadn’t done anything to hurt each other directly. This person was protecting me and I was reacting to it by protecting myself.

The really neat thing – and the point of this blog – is this person was encouraged by my confronting them. And I was encouraged by confronting them. The comment in the car to my husband earlier came back to me. We were both ministered to! Honestly, I had no intention of ministering to this person. My only goal was to confront this person about my concerns and make right our relationship. I wasn’t intending to condemn or criticize but I certainly didn’t think it would be an encouragement! Much to my surprise, and joy, we both felt uplifted and free.

I had dreaded the confrontation – I wanted to completely avoid it – but God knew all the details. He knew the whole story. I thought I did – turns out I didn’t – but I obeyed. When we approach a tough situation, pray for wisdom and obey God’s leading He uses it for His purpose and His glory. If you feel God leading you in a certain direction, even if you feel as if you’re walking blindly, just obey. You have no idea the purpose or even God’s blessing that awaits. Obey His leading.

(A few support verses…)

Colossians 3:12-17 (attitude toward others)

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other, as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Philippians 2:1-4 (attitude toward others)

So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.

James 4:17 (obedience)

So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.

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