When we think of serving in the church, we most likely think of exercising our own spiritual gifts. But have you ever thought that you are also serving when you are supporting others as they use their spiritual gifts?
Let me give you an example.
I’ve known my gift was teaching before I even knew what spiritual gifts were. I was blessed to be a part of a church who allowed me to exercise this gift with adult supervision as early as seventh grade. No service in the church brings me more joy than teaching.
Yet what would happen if I had no one to teach? While within the teacher-student dynamic we may view teachers as the servants, I contend that the people we teach are also serving us.
A teacher’s audience – for lack of a better word – enables us to exercise the gifting we have received. When you’re in my class, without even realizing it, you are serving – and blessing – me. When you’re in your Sunday School class, you are serving your Sunday School teacher. When you’re in your church’s worship service, you are serving your pastor.
Your presence affirms our gifts. Your presence thanks us for the time we have spent preparing. Your presence encourages us not to lose heart when we lose steam.
Let me be frank. We live in a day where commitment means less than it did before. We make commitments as long as it feels right and we bail when we stop receiving benefit. We all need reminded that church is not about us. It’s about Christ and serving one another and reaching the world with the Gospel.
We need to affirm and support our fellow brothers and sisters when they are exercising their giftedness, in whatever area. This might mean offering to help someone in his or her area of ministry, even if it’s not your area. It could mean helping to publicize an event that you might not even be able to attend. It could mean simply regularly asking about another’s ministry and supporting it by praying.
What are some ways we can serve other workers in the church and affirm their gifts?