Last weekend we were doing yard work and it was some kind of hot outside! The temperature was about 182 degrees and the humidity was around 200%. It was HOT!! I was pouring sweat and didn't even realize that while pulling the chord to start the weed eater I had rubbed a blister on the inside of my right pointer finger. This discovery came when sweat flowed into my open blister. Lava! It felt like lava. My finger was on fire. How can such a small thing cause that much pain. We finished the yard and you'll be happy to know I was able to save the finger.
Over the next couple of days I hit that blister several times and started the healing process all over again. You don't realize how much you use something (a hand, finger, arm) until you can't use it at full capacity. You see my finger is part of the team and when it doesn't function properly the whole team suffers. When I was in high school I played baseball and basketball. There were games when someone would get in foul trouble and they would have to sit on the bench for a while. This affected the entire team.
Now, as an adult and leader within the organization I work I recognize at an even greater capacity how people not pulling their weight affects the entire team! For the church I serve to be at full strength it requires people serving as greeters, nursery workers, children's church volunteers, sound and lighting techs, camera operators, IMAG operators, Bible study leaders, choir and orchestra members, etc! Are you worn out from reading the list? It can be overwhelming when you realize all that it takes to make our church function the way she is designed to function. The reason it is overwhelming is our membership hasn't fully embraced the part they are in the body! (Disclaimer - We have incredible volunteers at FBCOcala/Redemption City Church who sacrificially give of their time, talents and treasure and do an amazing job! We are blessed!!) I recognize this isn't just something that happens in the church I serve. In fact, I've witnessed this in every church I've ever served and based on the numerical data we read this is an issue all churches face. We have spectators who come and watch but never get off the bench!
Honestly there is too much at stake. In Ocala, the town I live, 65% of the community claims to be completely unchurched and/or has no faith affiliation. How can this be possible in the Bible Belt? Here's how....we aren't being effective and efficient in our churches. People aren't embracing and fulfilling their roles! It's time for us to get off of our rear ends and get in the game. When we sit out and are unwilling to do our part it is just like having a blister on your finger, you become unusable and others have to pick up your slack. Discover your role and work hard to be the best toe, knee, shoulder, neck or nose God has designed you to be!
Amanda Williams is a forty-year old wife and mother of two who can still swing her pony tail and display just a tad of sass. She is also a Jesus loving girl who realizes she is nothing without the One who saved her. Amanda has two degrees specializing in serving students with special needs and is currently working in the field of Leadership Development. She is a Christian author, speaker, blogger, and publisher who loves serving beside her husband at her local place of worship, First Baptist Church of Ocala.