“The porch needs fixed, Mom.”
“It’s so dusty around here.”
“We should deep-clean our house.”
“Our house is such a mess.”
“The yard needs cleaned up big time.”
I had seriously just walked in the door after two full days of not being at home and my son bombarded me with a bunch of things that needed to be done around the house. Things that almost always need to be done around the house. No, scratch that: always need to be done because I have never done most of them.
I am one person in a house of three people. I’m not going to say my kids don’t do anything around here, because they are decent about helping out. But with two kids, a job and a half, two dogs and no dryer, I can get busy real quick. The porch has never made it on my list of things to do because that’s a maintenance thing that I have never gotten around to. Dusting happens when things really begin to annoy me – not on the regular. The yard gets picked up before I mow, not because it bothers people. It bothers me all the time, but I have to prioritize or I will go crazy with the magnitude of need around here.
Okay, enough with the lame attempt to vindicate myself. I have a purpose and it is this: I let him ramble for a while until the anxiety really set in and then I told him to shut up or help me out. I said, “I’m not the only one who lives here and if something bothers you, do something about it! Stop waiting on me to do things because I only have so much time and there’s a lot more that could get done on the regular if someone else would kindly pitch in.”
This is a good word for the church, too, I think. The pews are full of people who can point out a million things wrong but how many get up and pitch in? There are a handful of faithful servants willing to be the hands and feet of Christ, but so much more can be done for the kingdom of God if everyone else would stop pointing out all the flaws and offer their time and effort. If you see something wrong in the church, wouldn’t it be more productive to pray about it instead of gossiping or complaining? Or better yet, step up and ask how you can help. Then put your wisdom to use instead of whispering it in vain in the form of a gripey opinion.
Don’t like the outreach methods being employed? Offer your time in that direction. Constantly complaining about the nursery workers after service or the way the church looks after its been cleaned? Do it yourself! There are so many things that could be done through the body of Christ, but so few people actually willing to do it. Of course, it’s much easier to find people if the position is lucrative and gives us a platform of some sort. But the stage is not the only place a ministry happens. What about the nursery? The altar? The youth group? Prison outreach? Feeding the homeless? Missions? Prayer groups? MOPS? There are so many opportunities within the church – so many needs – but not so many people willing to step up and help. What are you going to do: shut up or help?