IMG_3105It’s one of those words we blow up and bounce back and forth like a balloon game, without really getting it. Or maybe you get it perfectly and I’m the only one who wants to take out a pin and pop the thing, already.

Can I just say that if you are a human person, and you are breathing, you are in ministry.

If you are a butcher or a baker or a candlestick maker, you are in ministry.

Whether you are religious or not, paid or not, educated or not, if you are in the world interacting with other people, you areĀ in ministry.

Now you might be a great minister or you might be a terrible minister, but you are a minister nonetheless.

That’s what I think, anyway.

It’s all about serving, you see. That’s what the word means. And in the best of all worlds, in the best of all communities, in the best of all families … that’s what we do.

I’ve been told that all kinds of things aren’t real ministry. That foster parenting, or plain old parenting, or the job you get paid to do from nine to five… I’ve been told these things are not real ministry. And I think what is really being said is that ministry must somehow be ordained, or elevated, or whatever.

So here you go, friends. I’m ordaining you. You are the ones who will make a difference in your worlds, today. Go forth and be sweet.

Today, as I minister in my space among my people – in my kitchen and in the barn and at the doctor’s office this afternoon – I am hoping to be conscious of the significance of it all. I’m trying to be, anyway. I’m trying to really see and really serve.

Even with myself (hello vanilla candles and long hot bath).

Let’s minister well today, shall we?

And when we don’t, we’ll remember grace.

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I’m packing up the notes and the clothes and the hairspray, laundry on the go and a list running through my head, and I have twenty minutes, barely, to sit down here and scatter a few words on the screen. And all I can think to say is … help.

I know you know what I mean. I know you’ve been there, too. Maybe you are there right now?

It’s one of those times when there is more to do than there is time to do it, but I still want to do it all well.

There are women giving up their tomorrow, their Saturday – a day of doing whatever else they could be doing – to come and hear my two friends and I share a message of story and community and women working together, and I’m feeling a little scattered.

It’s not like I haven’t shared this before. I’ve stood behind other microphones in front of other rooms full of women, but this weekend, can I say, it feels a little stale.

I’ve said these words a thousand times already, is what it feels like.

And I don’t want a bunch of women giving up their Saturday for stale.

And my husband is sick and the yard needs to be raked and there are a pile of things that will be waiting for me when I get back home on Saturday night. A busy, busy Sunday and a Monday class for which I’ve not finished my reading, and the kids have their big drama performance in Regina on Wednesday. And to borrow an expression from my UK friend, Fay, the house is a tip. And, and, and …

I know you know what I mean. I know you’ve been there, too. Maybe you are there right now?

Might I ask, if you have a minute, that you say a little prayer for me? And I will say one for you.

A prayer for fresh words, fresh life, fresh ministry.

A fresh breeze to blow away the stale. Sounds nice, yes?