This weekend we had quite an adventure. I was invited to help out with a wedding reception at someone’s home for her daughter who recently was married to a leader of an international Messianic ministry. The wedding had taken place in Israel so friends and family were invited to celebrate at home. Assistance was needed for the occasion. Since our own recent wedding had a Messianic theme it was suggested that perhaps I might have some ideas and decorations to share. We had sprays of silk Lily of the Valley that were used at our own reception and were happy to share them. Soon I was helping with other details, and now I was sharing my self. It was through unusual circumstances just how we became involved, the apparent intervention of the Holy Spirit in connecting believers to one another.
Over the years I have learned to be more discerning about saying “yes” to ministry opportunities. Along with that came some difficult lessons in saying “no” without the guilt. I learned that just because you are asked by people doesn’t necessarily mean that you are being asked by the Lord. It is OK to be selective and prayerfully make a decision concerning when and where to serve. This has lead me on a path of a more focused ministry utilizing the gifts and talents the Lord has appointed me, and not only that but in the specific areas of His calling.
This seemed to be one of those special times when we are called to serve for a particular occasion even if it is outside the normal realm of service. I love to decorate and organize events so this came naturally, though I realized I would find myself being stretched physically while participating in the “helps” area. It was a busy time of preparation prior to the event, planning, shopping, packing supplies, decorating, ensuring ambiance, as well as performing basic kitchen and other miscellaneous duties, then came the clean up and packing it all up again at the end. My husband, who has a true servant’s heart, shared in this opportunity and was a tremendous help. What a joy it was working together to help bless this lovely couple and support the bride’s mom in hosting the reception. This was a special “yes” time.
Exhausted, but very blessed, my husband and I realized that although it was a privilege to help out with the practical details of the party, that somehow that seemed secondary to our real purpose there. . . encouragement. You see, we both had several opportunities to encourage and share with guests as we shared even our own story of God’s restoration in our lives, as well as other moments that others opened up to us with their own concerns. The body of Messiah was present and we were part of it, serving, sharing, ministering, in our own way simply because we were there, helping. In a precious way, it was very comfortable to be there, even amidst those we did not know, family in the Lord whom we had simply not been yet aquainted with. We met many new and interesting people and had great conversations about Israel, Hebrew culture, Travel, Biblical Archaelogy, Creation Science, and most of all God’s faithfulness ~ all my favorite topics!
This time of serving was a wonderful encouragement to us, as well, as we received the blessings that are enjoyed when we serve the Lord in gladness and do it unto Him. While serving within our own niche’ or not, the Lord reminded us that it was our attitude in serving and attentiveness to His call that was important . . . that loving kindness always fits His ministry niche. Whether we were there to serve one cup of coffee, light one candle, or encourage one person, serving in His presence was what mattered most . . . all we had to do was share our Lily of the Valley and become the fragrance of Christ to those we served.
“I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys.”
Song of Solomon 2:1