Project Shine 2013 and Seasons of Service

There are times on our calendars when either we or people we know participate in intensive seasons of service.  People go on missions trips, or weekends.  They commit a short period of time to aid a certain ministry, or pull off a certain event designed to  support or promote a specific cause.

These times should NOT define our faith.  Why? Because if they did, the world would know a Christianity that is only relevant when events on Christians’ calendars say it’s relevant.

So, how should we prepare for times when God does call us to a specific, intensive period of service? How should any Christian planning to participate in Project Shine (www.projectshineakron.org) next week consider this service opportunity? Here are three things to keep in mind:

1. We should ask God to make the most of it.

God does do great things when efforts of believers are concentrated on specific ministries and events.  The death and resurrection of Jesus came when people were in Jerusalem for the Passover.  The Holy Spirit poured out at Pentecost; again, a time when people were focused on one event.  Any missions opportunity can be a great time of God’s moving – we should ask God to make the most of it.

2. We should pray for lasting effect.

If you talk to anyone who’s been in leadership on a short term trip, among their frustrations would be the dynamic of the spiritual high followed by the spiritual letdown.  We should pray for lasting effects of these opportunities. Are people inspired to serve and evangelize more in their every day lives because of what they learn on missions trips? That’s the hope, but not often the result.  Pray for that!

3. We should pray against Satan.

Satan does not like when Christians are united and gathered to serve and proclaim Jesus. Human flaws are exploited. Relationships are attacked. Careless words are taken the wrong way. Griping divides.  We should pray that these results would be minimized in any short term service opportunity.  Jesus is more glorified when the hearts of the people gathered to serve are unified. When communication flows, loving expressions follow.  When communication breaks down, divisiveness ensues.

 

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