The Joy of Serving in the Church!
Written by Christi Given | December 23, 2013
Every week, I go through the “Girl Talk” section of Project Inspired and look for those seeking advice and counsel. I want to help answer some questions you may have about living out your Christian life and walk of faith! We want PI to be a safe place where you can ask questions.
A PI Girl posted that she is troubled because her parents pass notes in church and are bored at times, and she finds it disrespectful. She’s frustrated that her family isn’t as attentive as they could be. Read the full post here.
Do you ever get bored in church? Do you tend to complain about the service or sometimes feel like you can’t find the church that fits your liking? This can be frustrating and is common among different believers, especially if you weren’t raised in the church and don’t have a church family. We all go through ups and downs, but remember no one is perfect and we all can help each other in the body of Christ…we are all family.
We may find ourselves bored at times or experience a lull in going to church, but we need to take a different perspective and realize we are in the house of God. Let us pray for our hearts to be open to learn, to grow and to serve, and pray for our family members to be alert and open as well. We need to stay consistent, stay faithful and stay in the same church. It says in the Bible that those who stay planted in the house of God will flourish. (Psalm 92:13)
This question about boredom sparks interesting conversation for me personally because this is a common concern. The real question we shouldn’t be asking is “What church suits me?” but rather “Where can I serve?” (John 13) This reminds me of a famous quote by President John F. Kennedy:
“My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country.” —JFK
It’s great to want to be part of a church that’s healthy and has longevity, accountability, a pastoral leadership team and Biblical doctrine. We need to see those things as important, but also that we need to serve. Instead of “going to church,” we need to see ourselves as “the church.”
The church isn’t a building, but rather the body of Christ or the body of believers. Christ is the head of us, and we are His hands and feet. (Colossians 1:18) What is the point of going to church and gathering information if you are bored, not paying attention and don’t apply what is being taught? We should desire to grow, take notes and become more like Christ. If this doesn’t sound appealing to you or if you don’t understand this concept, ask God to open your eyes to have a revelation of service.
For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. —Ephesians 5:23
IS THE CHURCH LIKE A BUSINESS OR A SERVICE?
There is a notion that the American church has become like a business and/or the churchgoers have become like the attendees or “consumers.” Do you agree with this? Do you think we have lost the basics and are just getting comfortable?
Mark Driscoll’s church, Mars Hill, has a website/blog called The Resurgence, and they posted an interesting article about how the church (the body of Christ) has somewhat lost its way regarding being like a “family” and has turned into a corporation in some ways. Click here for the full article. Here is some food for thought from the site:
Almost every pastor I know grieves consumerism among American evangelicals today. But what if pastors are equally at fault?
To many worshipers, the church is like a business.
They choose their spiritual home on the basis of the goods and services they will receive, much as a consumer chooses a retail store. This means the modern pastor is tempted to grow his church by offering better services than his competitors (other churches) in what is statistically a shrinking market.
When looking for a church or evaluating our current service, we should stay away from complaining unless there is something that is contradicting the Word of God. Within the church, we may experience ups and downs, even different aspects of the service we may not have orchestrated the same way and so forth, but let us first serve. When we serve and see where there may be a need, we begin to really understand and have compassion for how much work it takes to make a service take place. Amen? (I am preaching to myself as well.) Interesting that attending church is called “service.” The name is definitely fitting.
THE REVELATION OF SERVICE AND DOING YOUR PART
I really got this revelation when I was serving in my church, driving outside of my hometown sacrificially because I wanted to serve, wanted to grow and wanted to help build the house of the Lord. I saw the volunteers and all it takes to make a service possible. Since we don’t have a building, you can really see the efforts of the church and the “body,” which is a little different and more noticeable than other churches I’ve attended, simply because they’ve been there longer and have buildings. This isn’t good or bad—I just really see how valuable each person is. Every person and volunteer matters. Your presence matters. Your help and the time you sow is so valuable. You may think your church is fine with people who are on staff and whatnot, but you’d be surprised to find how many times churches have events or different outreaches for which they need help.
What I’m trying to explain is that we have a mentality of “serve me,” not “let me serve you.” I had a revelation on service the past two years being part of a church plant without a home building, and it has been beyond an honor to serve and to set up chairs or coffee, or be backstage setting up for the worship. Whether greeting people in the front of the house of God or singing on the stage, EVERY PERSON in the body of Christ who is setting up matters. (1 Corinthians 12:12-31) Without the volunteers at our church right now, we wouldn’t have a service. We all have different gifts, so volunteering may not be of interest to you, but I pray God will show you where you too can serve in your local church.
THE HANDS AND FEET OF JESUS: HOW WE ARE THE BODY OF CHRIST
I see how the Lord literally gives us this illustration of us being the body (hands and feet of Jesus). Everyone is in different stages of their walk with the Lord. Some are baby Christians (new believers), others are seekers (not saved, but curious about the Gospel), and then there are believers (growing in different stages—pretty much all believers). We may not necessarily understand the power of serving. Just ask the Lord to show you what your part is. Of course, there is no obligation to serve at your church, but I believe if you step out of your comfort zone and serve—rather than just go to receive—it will be a wonderful experience for you.
Please know that this is no condemnation of those who may not be able to serve in their church because of work, health reasons, lack of desire or nervousness about trying something new. You might use your gifts in other areas, and church may be a time of replenishing and restoring, but I just wanted to share the JOY of serving. If you’re bored in church or don’t agree with something, try getting more involved and you’ll feel excited about your church family and house!
Remember, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords humbled himself and came from heaven to the earth to reveal himself to mankind, and to die on the cross. It is so vital in growing as a Christian. Jesus said himself in Mark 10:45:
What do you think, PI Girls? Do you agree or disagree with serving in church?