A few weeks ago, I was blessed to share a message at my home church in Grand Rapids. In preparation for the message, the pastor asked for all members to send in pictures of themselves at work. I took those pictures and put it into a slide show for a worship song.
[Side note: Too many of our worship songs that we sing when we are gathered have pictures of nature as the backdrop. This gives the subtle message that worship can only happen when we are in beautiful scenery. Having worship songs pictures in the workplace reminds us that work can be an act of worship and the workplace can be a spiritual place as well. More ideas below!]
I chuckled when I saw some of the pictures of children, especially when I saw one of a toddler on a potty. But then I had to remind myself that potty training is serious work and critically important for functioning in this world!
The realization and growing understanding is that everyone has a frontline – a workplace – and as I think about it, children have some seriously hard work to do! (I’ve posted a couple of pictures of my children doing the hard work of learning under the age of three.)
Think about it – in the first three months of life, a baby has to learn significant motor skills, including controlling his/her head and limbs. A baby learns to see and hear during this time and refines that to be able to identify parents from others. A baby begins to communicate without being able to talk, identifying their own needs, smiling, and the list goes on. We all have a workplace. Some of those workplaces are paid. Some are not. Some of those workplaces are recognized. Many are not.
All of us are called into fulltime ministry. But our specific assignments are unique and different!
As I was pondering this last week, a friend shared a Ted Talk that was done by a seven-year-old(!) on how the game of peek-a-boo could change the world. I was intrigued that a Ted Talk was done by someone that young and enjoyed listening to her.
And it reinforced the importance of the work of children and the incredible work of parents! If you are inclined, you can watch it here:
In the meantime, my home church continues to move toward “whole life discipleship” as can be seen in the pictures below. There are maps where people can identify the parish where they serve (reinforcing that a church has as many parishes as members – even more when we count home, work, and other places of influence!). And a mirror, which says “Missionaries We Support.” This acknowledges that every member is on mission. I love this! They have been doing commissioning services on different Sundays for different industries. This coming Sunday (October 23), I am privileged to bring a message at Madison Square Church at 10 am on this topic of whole-life discipleship. Please join in person if you are in the area, otherwise you can tune in on YouTube!