(Photo by Selma Komisky)
Where Everyone is Apart
By Brittney Perez
When it comes to ministry in church there’s one thing I’ve heard multiple times and from multiple people and that is how ministry really makes you feel apart of the church and church body. Having been in various ministries over the years I can honestly say this is so true. If you are currently at a church and find yourself lacking in the area of community, I would highly suggest getting involved in a ministry. By being involved not only are you able to serve, but there’s a depth you can build with others as you serve alongside them, and it’s often times this depth that we desire to have with people.
When I first started going to the church I’ve been a part of for 10 years now I didn’t know many people, in fact, I only knew one person. In the beginning, it felt kind of awkward. Even though I knew we were believers and everyone was friendly toward me, I still wasn’t experiencing that connection I craved to have with people. It wasn’t until I started to get involved in ministry that I began to see friendships develop with people.
Throughout the years I’ve been apart of different ministries ranging from worship to high school ministry. When you’re a part of the church body in this way over time you begin to learn how to do ministry and work alongside others.
Every ministry serves a different purpose and is ran differently just like in any company or organization; every person plays a unique role. In ministry, however, you are serving one another as well as the church. Because of this, it’s very important to have a healthy partnership in ministry. Regardless if you’re at work, on a team/committee of some sort, or in ministry as we are discussing, partnership plays a huge role in the atmosphere you create. Many of us have probably experienced unhealthy partnerships at some point in life. When you are in an unhealthy partnership the signs are obvious: lack of communication, miscommunication, bickering, lack of participation, division etc. Typically these partnerships don’t last until a change is made. As Jesus said in Mark 3:25, “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.” While doing ministry you want to be in healthy partnership with those you are around and doing ministry with.
So what does a healthy partnership in ministry look like? A healthy partnership looks like building community in a way that benefits not only those who are apart of the ministry, but also those that are being served and that starts from within.
Communication is key in every partnership. While being in ministry it’s important to practice having good communication with the people you are in ministry with. A healthy partnership also looks like making an effort to get to know those you are partnering with in ministry. It’s hard to feel connected when you don’t feel you know the people you are serving alongside of. Notice most of these involve making an effort. Typically in ministry, you will have a leader or someone who is an overseer of the ministry. I feel it can be easy for these people to be looked at as the “superior leader” by others and while these people do have an important role, ministry isn’t about any one person. It can be easy to wait on a leader to keep people updated or in the loop, but the ministry leader needs others to also step in and help as no one person can do everything on their own. Of course for big decisions, one should not act alone, but it can be easy to feel overlooked by the main leader or hurt and in reality that shouldn’t be the case. There is no one person that is more important than others in ministry and I would say that if that’s the case, that would be a sign of unhealthy partnership (1 Corinthians 12:12-14 NIV).
When we think of church and ministry we should never think, “division.” Division is the total opposite of what doing ministry should look like. Instead, we should think of inclusion and that comes by creating healthy partnerships with one another in the body of Christ. The church, though built up of many people from varying backgrounds and experiences, should be a place where people feel welcomed and part of the family, and creating those healthy partnerships in ministry is how you can help bring heaven to earth.