Ministry/Minister: one who serves or assists someone else; an exercise of one’s gifts and resources (Dictionary of the Life Application Study Bible, NIV). This is the biblical definition of ministry and what a minister literally does. Would you believe we minister every day?
As a wife and mother of two, I’d never really thought of ministry, I always viewed it as having to do with preaching and teaching of the Word. Then between reading Desperate by Sally Clarkson & Sarah Mae AND talking with my husband one morning. I REALLY realized that even though I don’t particularly serve in a “ministry” I actually do. What I mean is that in serving my husband and children, I am in ministry. There is ministry in marriage and motherhood.
As a wife, we are called and created to be a helpmeet. Eve, the first woman/wife/mother, was created to be a helpmeet. She was created to serve and glorify God. When you help a person, you aren't taking charge and leading them, no you quietly help them as they need it, as they request it, in essence you serve their needs. As a mom, the entire first few years of your child(ren)’s life is spent in servitude. You’re fixing bottles, changing diapers, wiping up drool, etc… You are literally serving your child(ren). Even as they get older you are still serving them in making sure they eat, have clean clothes, and learn.
I honestly believe (I have my moments) that in life we all have our ministries. We want to see them thrive and excel, we want to see them glorify God. Marriage and motherhood is no different. As a wife I want to see my marriage thrive and glorify God, I want it to become a legacy of love and commitment not only to ourselves and our family but also to the Lord. As a mom, I want to see my children thrive, excel, and glorify God with their lives. I want to see my children grow and mature. My home I want to nurture it so that it becomes and remains a safe haven for my family, where they feel comfortable and secure. Isn't that what you essentially do in ministry? You attend the Lord’s sheep, nurturing and protecting them so that they can mature and glorify God with their lives. Even if you aren't pastoring a church but in missions, you still want to nurture the people you come across, pointing them to Christ, helping them mature along the way, all for the Lord’s glory.
I write this for wives and mothers, husbands and fathers. You are in ministry in your marriage, in your family. Use your marriage not only for personal pleasure, but make sure God gets the glory. Your children raise them, but make sure you instill knowledge of who God is in them. And by all means don’t ever underestimate what you do and what you are responsible for. Paul reminds us that BEFORE a person can even serve in the church, they had to have served in their family and have served well. It should be visible for all to see. (Check out 1 Timothy 3 & Titus 1:5-9) Something that I've learned in the past couple years is that what works well for one family may not necessarily work for yours. You MUST do what's best for your family, not what you see on a blog or twitter, because YOU have to live with the results.
Colossians 4:17 “Tell Archippus: See to it that you complete the ministry you have received in the Lord.” I think this charge is to every husband, wife, father, and mother. We have been entrusted with the ministry of our marriages, of our families and we are charged with seeing it through. I was once told, there are no days off in motherhood and I can attest to their being no days off in both marriage and motherhood. Everyday you've got to put your best foot forward and thank God in everything.
Couples/parents there will be some hard days. There will be some storms. There will be the tough days when you want to throw in the towel. I encourage you through Paul’s words in 2 Corinthians 4:1, “therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart.” I encourage you not to lose heart but be thankful that you have your spouse and children to serve and minister to.
~Love to you all