It is all in how you think about it. Is it work or is it ministry? Is it drudgery or is it celebration? Is it pressure from the top down or is it an opportunity to do something new and exciting?
There are many things that we must do as clergy: Vital Signs, End of the Year Reports, Wesley Cell Groups, Clergy Meetings, Hospital visits, leading Bible Studies, preparing sermons, herding the staff (yes, even the volunteer staff), and so much more. These "things" can become kill-joys and suck the life out of us if we think of them in negative ways or ways that "stifle" our own creative will.
Yes, there are things I would rather not to have to do, but if I do them with the right spirit and with a cheerful heart, they can be blessing to me and to others.
As a husband and father I have to clean the cat litter and the laundry room where our evil cat eats and cares for herself. I don't enjoy scooping the litter, sweeping the stray flung litter pieces, mopping the swiped-out water and strewn food bits, but I do it. Yes, I mutter every Saturday morning about how much I dislike this task, but I do it. When I have completed it, I can step back and see a clean and smell-free laundry room; it is an accomplishment of something I have done that helps all involved.
Now I don't mean to compare our ministry and its tasks with cleaning up cat litter, but I think you get the idea. It is all in how we think about it.
I hope you will consider the work of a clergyperson not as "have to" but instead as "get to." You and I have been tasked with many things, and if we think of these things as positive and helpful and even in strange ways as kingdom building, we will be blessed as will the Church.
Your work is not for naught but for Christ. Remember the scriptures tell us to do all things for Christ, that's what the Apostle Paul says in Colossians 3:23:
"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord not for human masters."
I have to remind myself all the time that this is for the Master and that He blesses all we do.
Thank you for doing all you do. I'm pulling and praying for you.
As always it is a blessing to see a bit of heaven when I worship at Still Waters. This is truly a reflection of the Kingdom of God. Thank you, Carole, for your ministry and for opening your pulpit to Dr. Jamie Jenkins on Sunday.