What if we stopped being offended?


“As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.”  Ephesians 4:1

Yesterday I read a great piece written by one of my favorite bloggers, Sarah Bessey.  The article was titled “The Invisible Generation: Youth-focused Christianity may be sidelining the gifts of older women” (read it here).    While writing a book, Ms. Bessey’s research uncovered a theme she had not expected: that middle-aged women in the church felt invisible and ignored.  Many of these women felt they had been nothing less than shoved out of ministry because they were no longer young and beautiful – a sad but true commentary on how the church mirrors pop culture.

I appreciate this article, as I’ve personally witnessed this happen to friends of mine.  I agree that it is an injustice, and the church is missing out by dismissing parts of the body based on appearance.  Think 1 Corinthians 12 and how essential each part of your body is…even the un-pretty parts.

Yet, I began to wonder, what if our response to these kinds of offenses was different?  What if, instead of getting angry, arguing, and causing division in the church (equally upsetting in God’s eyes), we opened our minds to the possibility that God might be calling us to a different ministry?  He does that, you know.

If we are growing and maturing in the faith, we should also be seeking additional gifts of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 14).  Those gifts might be needed in a different area, that we can’t even see at the moment.  I had absolutely no idea that God had plans to use me in youth ministry until I was practically forced into it.

We also need to stop making this about ourselves.  Jesus is the great “I am” (John 8:58), not me.   Any true success we have in ministry is the work of the Spirit living in us; we aren’t qualified on our own.  God enables us to minister.  (2 Corinthians 3:1-6)

What if we stopped being offended every time someone in the church does us wrong?  What if, instead, we got on our knees and excitedly asked God, “What’s next?  What do you have for me to do now?”



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