Last week was a well-timed kickoff of my online virtual Zoom study for Discovering Jesus…
…whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant… (Matthew 20:26)
We have been married AND in ministry 42 years! The day we got back from our honeymoon, we taught a youth ministry class and then stayed there for 4 years before attending seminary. Being a Ministry-Minded Marriage has, for the most part, been a GREAT benefit and blessing to our relationship.
Perhaps you have read this verse or heard it at a wedding:
A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. (Eccl. 4:12 NLT emphasis added)
You, your mate, and God are a strong three stranded cord! God is the superglue of love.
We read a study then quoted it in our book, Red Hot Monogamy, that couples that who pray together, study God’s Word, attend a Bible-believing church and have a friendship circle of friends that believe in long lasting love (like a marriage-focused small group) these couples have the highest rate of marital happiness and experience more “Red Hot Monogamy” than the average couple.
It seems the more passion you have toward God, then God boomerangs passion back into your marital relationship.
These are all great reasons of why you would want a Ministry- Minded Marriage. But HOW do you create a ministry-minded marriage? There are millions of ways to exercise your talents, gifts, skills and share your resources as a ministry-minded couple, here are just a few ideas.
- Attend a local church, volunteer as you read or hear opportunities shared. By trying several different options together, you may fine-tune what experiences build into your marriage as you give out and serve others.
- Join a Marriage Small Group. Use your gifts and talents to assist in hosting or facilitating a small group.
- Volunteer for a non-profit in a cause close to your heart.
- Team up and serve to bless your children’s peer circle: coach, teach children’s church, mentor, tutor, camp counselors, etc.
- As a couple or family, address a need you see in your community or the headlines.
- Go on a missions’ trip.
- Make a line item in your budget to give to needs as the Holy spirit brings them across your path.
- Get training to minister to a need: respite care for a couple with a special needs child, Grief care, lay counselors, small group leaders, Steven Ministry lay care, etc.
- Write, speak, teach, train, organize, lead, develop an online ministry – as a team.
- Get formal education to enter ministry part-time or full time as a paid professional.
Serve Independent then Together
The above are just a few ways to serve together—however, you can also each use your unique gifts on separate paths then support one another with prayer and in tangible ways. If you decide to use your gifts on independent paths, be sure to meet weekly for a “prayer and share” so you stay connected. You might also choose a way to celebrate together when you see God use each of your giftedness.
Serve and See Results
One of the joys of our marriage is to fellowship with other ministry-minded couples. These iron-sharpening iron relationships are life-giving. Here is just one quick recent example. A couple of decades ago, when our three sons were student leaders in Fellowship of Christian Athletes, we spoke at a Coaches’ Couples Conference. While there, we met and ministered to many couples, but one couple spent a little extra time with us. They were parents of a special needs child and we listened, shared, prayed, and tried to breathe life into them. Over the years, God crossed our paths, sometimes through FCA, sometimes through women’s or men’s ministry or speaking at conferences.
A few years ago, this strong, overcoming couple launched a ministry: Hope On the Hard Road, which hosts a You Tube Channel, podcast, zoom meet ups, events for men and for women, webinars and live in person date nights to encourage, equip, and enrich the lives of other parents of special needs children. This year, in the Valentine season, we spoke at one of their events. In one of the zoom planning meetings, Eric and Christin listened to the difficulties of our caregiving our elders’ journey and they breathed life into us!
Improving Your Serve
This week: Meet for Coffee and Conversation for a Marriage Meet Up and talk through how you want to improve or become a Ministry Minded Marriage. [Yes, using the Marriage Meet Ups: His and Hers Devotional Planners for Couples Who Want More Passion, Purpose and Productivity will help you discover, walk out your passionate callings and stay balanced as a Ministry-Minded Couple.
Pray these scriptures to open your hearts to God’s leading:
“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” (Is. 6:8)
“The LORD came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” (1 Sam 3:10)
Bill and Pam Farrel are the Co-Directors of Love-Wise Ministry and the Living Love-Wise Membership Community. Some of the ministry experiences they have enjoyed range from teaching 4 year old Sunday School, leading Youth ministry, teaming up when Bill was Lead Pastor and Pam served as a Women’s Ministry Director, at a local church, writing and team teaching, running Love-Wise ministry, co-leading small groups, and a myriad of other experiences that God has brought across their path. They make their home on their live aboard boat docked in Southern California.
Join the Farrels at Trek Together Online Date Night March 24, 2022. Registration for Date Night or order the Deluxe Bundle with Date Night PLUS the Marriage Meet Up Set.