God, this urban ministry stuff is tough!

Remember, our message is not about ourselves; we’re proclaiming Jesus Christ, the master. All we are is messengers, errand runners from Jesus…’  2 Corinthians 4: 5 (MSG) 

Prayer Sustaining Ministry Wellbeing
An urban stairway

Thought:  

Slanging matches played out loud and proud in streets. Disagreements settled with a fistful of hair or the crack on a skull. Blue sirens screaming. Crow bars and battering rams forcing through the doors of flats. An older neighbour choosing between eating or heating. A family trying to live off one wage finding themselves unable to pay their bills. A young lad smashing up the shops because he doesn’t know how to express himself. One mother burying her child as another waves her son off to prison. Funding-cuts forcing the youth club shut. All your neighbour can think of is where his next drink is coming from. You used to have such dreams for this community. It seems everywhere you look people are drowning. You only have enough lifejackets. Enough hours in the day. Who do you help? Who do you fix? This urban ministry stuff is tough!  Wait! Nobody asked you to be the Saviour of your estate. That job has already been filled. It’s time you got off the throne and let Jesus reign again. Our Saviour has dreams for your community. He will see them manifest in his own timing. Instead of forcing the kingdom’s hand, trying to fix everybody’s problems, take a step back and breathe. You’re not called to carry their cross. What are you called to do? 

In Galilee the streets were littered with sick people, the alleyways filled with those wanting to be healed. The place was overrun with need. Yet Mark 1: 34 says, ‘and Jesus healed many who had various diseases.’ Many. Not all. Jesus only did what he saw the father doing. Feeling overwhelmed? Perhaps you’re doing more than God is asking of you. Ask yourself ‘what is the father doing here?’ Discern what is the small part you might play. Is there a manageable step you can take? God was already present in your community before you turned up with your panic-driven timetable. Breathe. Look to God. Discern. Play your small part. Urban ministry is tough. But God’s ministry is supposed to be light. ‘Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.’ Matthew 11: 30 (MSG) 

 

Let’s pray… 

 Lord, 

I’m feeling overwhelmed and burnt out.
I see many people drowning and I don’t know what to do.
Show me what I’m called to do and help me leave the rest to you.
This is your work; your mission and I turn it back over to you.
Take me back to the place where you first called me.
Excite my imagination once more, restore to me the joy of serving you in this community.
I’m sorry for where I have elected myself saviour of this estate and I resign from that post right now.
I thank you for your work in this community and for allowing me to play a small part.
Bless my role and make it holy. 

Amen. 

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