This morning I had a steering team planning meeting for our church's new MOPS group. I love meeting with this group of young moms. They inspire me and make me feel young. Especially since one of them had on the same shirt I was wearing this morning. It made me feel really hip and youthfully stylish!
I'm thrilled that our church is finally able to start a new MOPS group. We already have two in our area, but one of them (the one where I've been a mentor mom for the past five years) is full and has a long waiting list and the other one has limited space due to their childcare facilities. So there's a real need for another group that can minister to young moms and their preschoolers in our city, especially since we have a military post here.
MOPS is a great international ministry that supports moms of preschoolers and gives them opportunities for making friends, learning new skills, gaining godly wisdom, and developing leadership abilities. If you're not familiar with MOPS, you can find out more here, and maybe even find a group that meets in your area.
The main reason I'm passionate about MOPS is because I love ministering to women, and young women who are just starting their families and setting the patterns they will follow for years to come have a special place in my heart. These women truly are the heart of their homes. They have the power to create the environment in which their children grow in, make choices that affect their families' future, and blaze the path for their families' spiritual journey. And yet, these very women often feel inadequate for the tasks, drained and weary from their everyday duties, isolated and overwhelmed. That's why it's so important to offer them a place of refuge, refueling, fellowship, and encouragement.
For some reason, God gave me a real heart for women's ministry when I was in college. Perhaps that passion was birthed because so many dear women invested their time and energy in me during those years. They befriended, encouraged, taught, and mentored me. And I ate it up. Their investment in me made a huge difference in my life. And I want to make that same kind of difference in the lives of the women I teach and mentor.
Women are on my heart. But I know other people who have a passion to minister to teenagers, senior adults, school aged children, preschoolers, and college kids. I also know folks who minister to those who are grieving, those who are caregivers for the sick and dying, children with special needs, foster children, women who've had abortions, and military families. I have friends who love to minister overseas, across the border, and in the inner city. And I know people who reach out with the love of Christ to those who ride motorcycles, those who backpack the Appalachian Trail, those who travel in RVs, and those who are homeless. I've had the personal privilege of being the recipient of the love and attention given by those who feel called to minister to ministers and their families.
I'm glad that God has given each of His children a burden, a love for different kinds of folks. Sometimes we can get a little frustrated because we think everyone should be as passionate as we are about, say, children, teenagers, or those contemplating abortion. But the truth is that God gives us all different passions so that all the bases get covered. We need to learn to appreciate and respect each others' passions instead of resenting them or expecting everyone else to adopt ours.
Ministry is about people. But your ministry is probably about a certain type of people. In fact, that is one of the best ways to find your ministry if you haven't yet identified it. Simply ask yourself, "Who is on my heart? Who do I love spending my energy on? Who do I feel compassionate toward? Who do I hurt for? Who do I have high hopes for?"
So what I'd like to know on this Ministry Monday is "Who's on your heart?" Who has God given you a passion to reach with His love? Who do you desire to impart truth to? Whose plight burdens you and weighs heavy on your heart? Who are you compelled to reach out to? You can be as specific as you'd like, but I'd love to heart about your passion!
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