This year I transitioned jobs 3 times: Missionary in the Netherlands, Government/Charity Liaison for the state of Texas, and Fundraiser for an educational nonprofit in Austin. The most difficult transition has been moving from “field staff” to “administrative staff.” What I mean by that is, “being oversees sharing the Gospel” vs. “being in the office and going to meetings for charity.”
Ever compared yourself to people who are “in full-time ministry” versus your “normal” job? Why do we segment those? Why do we make one out to be spiritual and other non-spiritual?
To be honest, my office job had felt so much less spiritually significant. I didn’t even realize it at first. Yet slowly over time, I noticed I was comparing myself to other people in “full-time ministry.” I wished I was overseas too, seeing God at work in people’s lives in exciting and tangible ways. My new day-to-day reality with filled with mountains of paperwork. It just felt… I don’t know… ordinary.
I told my husband that as much as I knew in my mind that all work for the Lord was equally as purposeful, I felt in my heart that my office work was less spiritually important than being a field-staff missionary. He shared Acts 6:1-7 with me:
“In those days when the number of disciples was increasing, the Hellenistic Jews among them complained against the Hebraic Jews because their widows were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food. So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.” This proposal pleased the whole group. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit; also Philip, Procorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas from Antioch, a convert to Judaism. They presented these men to the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.”
In other words, there were poor widows who were being overlooked in the daily distribution of food and the disciples decided that a group of 7 from among them should take responsibility. Did you notice what kind of people were selected? Those known to be full of the Spirit, faith, and wisdom. Did you catch how God was using their food-serving jobs? Spreading the Gospel.
How cool is that? The same character that was sought for the disciples to teach and preach the word of God was the same as those waiting tables. 1 It wasn’t ANY less spiritual or significant to serve food. Both resulted in building God’s kingdom.
In our day-to-day work (whatever it is) let us be women who are full of the Spirit, faith, and wisdom. Let us be women who choose to stop comparing ourselves to other people’s “spiritual versus non-spiritual jobs” because, well, that’s not a real thing. Let us be women who work whole-heartedly as to serve the Lord, not man.
2 Let us encourage one another on the mission, all the more.