Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Life is filled with various types of moments, isn't it? We face pivotal moments when our lives are drastically changed forever, and we face moments that pass without a second thought into history. We face moments of joy, hope, regret, shock, peace, fear, etc. But sometimes we face moments that just make us stop and think. These are simple, uneventful moments that derail the progress of a typical day, cause us to hit the pause button, stop whatever it is we are doing, and just kind of zone out. Nothing major. Just a subtle blip on the screen of life. Well, I had one of those moments today. And I was blowing up balloons.

Midway through my day, I found myself sitting in a hot closet of my church where we store a helium tank. I was blowing up balloons for our Wednesday night kids bible club. No big deal, right? Just blowing up balloons. Red. Blue. Pink. Yellow. Green. I blew them up, tied the ends into a knot and tied a colorful ribbon to the end. I planned on blowing up about 20 balloons, but around number 18, it hit me. I've just spent 30 minutes of my day making balloons. From the time it took me to gather my supplies, walk over to the storage room and make 18 balloons, 30 minuets have vanished. And they were spent making balloons! What could that possibly have to do with God, ministry or anything else for that matter. Balloons!

My mind began to wander. I began to feel that sinking feeling, and I'll admit, I started to get a little depressed. Is this what I expected I would be doing as I worked my way through seminary? Is this what I thought being called into ministry would entail? Is this activity that has taken so much of my time, helping to build God's Kingdom? Did I make too many red ones?

OK, is this all about balloons? No. Is this about effect time management? Maybe a little. I did just buy a nice new day planner. With a calculator! But I think this moment of pause in my day was for a reason bigger than helium and ribbon. I think this was a subtle way of God communicating a much deeper issue. This was just the bump in the road that snapped me out of highway hypnosis.

Scripture is full of verses on serving God. Paul says in his letter to the Colossian Church, "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men...It is the Lord Christ you are serving." What Paul is saying here is that it's not so much the action, but the motives behind the action. Are we serving God with the very essence of our souls, or are we just going through the motions. It's not about blowing up balloons. It's not about teaching a Sunday School class, preaching a sermon, cleaning toilets or writing blogs. It's about our hearts and who we are serving. Our service to God should not primarily come through and abundance of energy, time or strength, but from the overwhelming conviction that we are serving the God of creation! Sometimes, we are just blowing up balloons, and that's OK! Maybe it's in these simple moments that He teaches more about serving with Him, rather than just doing stuff for Him.

No comments: