So it’s been just about a week since arriving in Perth. Coming here was kind of a go-along decision with what God had been instilling in my heart over several months now.
This weekend, the church I am training with – metrochurch, had an event called NEXT Conversation. Tim Costello (Global ambassador of World Vision), Josh Bond (Founder of Initiate Australia) and Ps. Danny Guglielmucci (Founder of The Edge Church) were the speakers – all of whom were incredibly inspiring.
Coming to Perth, one of my biggest struggles was letting go of the ministries I had back home in Klang. While I love “doing” ministry, I grown to love the people I do ministry with even more. Having been involved in the next generation ministry for quite some time now, letting them go for this short time was difficult.
Ministering to people can sometimes be a thankless job and while I love the “kids” I lead, I struggled for sometime with the under-appreciation that comes with the role for me and my fellow leaders. It is my belief that encouragers should be encouraged too and I was struggling as to how to pass on that culture to the “next gen” God has placed under us without actually sounding like we were “entitled” to their appreciation.
Then came the weekend. I just wanted God to speak into this situation as I was so far away from home and cannot spend time with the youth in church as I usually do.
At the start of the ‘Conversation,’ Ps. Geoff shared the verse from Galatians 6:9 that says, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper (right) time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” (The next verse says: “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.” – v10)
There was part of my answer, already. It lied with “not giving up.”
Then, during the Sunday services Ps. Danny Guglielmucci’s messages were heart-piecing. Over his two sermons (morning and night services), Ps. Danny spoke about the culture of honor and how much God blesses a church with the culture of honor – which spoke to my desire for our church and the next generation.
However, he also spoke about putting on a garment (the ephod), to remind ourselves (leaders and people in ministry) that we are not just “set up” for ministry but also to be “set apart” for ministry. That means we are to keep our focus and understand that we are called for a purpose for “the right time” – which spoke to my struggle.
Ps. Danny had many powerful quotable quotes over his sermons during the weekend which if I were to share here could make this long post even longer (I’ll share more on Facebook over the coming days). However, I’d like to share just one:
“You can’t lead what you don’t love.”
I realized, then, that I lead the people I lead only because I love the people I lead. Don’t get me wrong… I’m not sharing this to get more ‘thank yous’ but hoping that this would encourage someone with similar discouragements and struggles to stay steadfast to the role God has placed you in.
It’s easier to get a pat on the back or an encouraging word from your leaders and peers but it can be even more uplifting to get an encouragement from those whom you lead and those whom you encourage.
So, to the people/leaders anywhere who may be struggling with a lack of value or appreciation from those you lead, remember that you WILL reap a harvest… at the right time. So, stay the course. The best is yet to come.
To those who are being led, there is never a “written rule” or forced obligation to appreciate your leaders but if you look at what they have invested in your life and feel compelled to send them a note or appreciate them on social media or just treat them to something, anything in your own creative way – DO IT! Don’t hesitate. Get in the habit of it. When you encourage your encouragers, you tell them that what they have invested in you does not go unnoticed and that they are “sowing something good” in and for you.
You never know if that (your appreciation) could be just what kicks them into another gear of sowing more revelation and goodness into your life. It’s the beautiful cycle of unity and fellowship in the body of Christ.