*Much of this post was originally written in March.*
"You should write a book." My friend the manager of the Office Suite where I work said that to me this morning. That was after she had come into my office and sat for 10 minutes recapping all that had gone on in the office since I was last there on Thursday. That conversation was followed by a visit from the gentleman down the hall who walks by my office heading towards the coffee room about 5 times a day. Which was followed by a quick visit to the front desk where the receptionist unloaded her frustrations. Then the phone call came from the office manager, "you should write a book about all of us who tell you all this stuff."
There are people I know who believe ministry only happens in the context of talking about God and Jesus. If you aren't sharing about God or Jesus and lives aren't being "saved", then you aren't really doing ministry. There are people who think ministry only happens in a church building on Sunday mornings by one person (in their minds that person should be male) who talks at you for 45 minutes. There are people who believe I left ministry behind when God called me out of my job as Youth and Young Adult Director at the church of my past.
I have news for them. I am doing "ministry". My ministry involves listening to the people who show up at my office door during the day. Some walk in and sit down in the chair, some just stand awhile. Sometimes ministry happens in the hallways or by the coffee pots. My ministry involves laughing with them, counseling them, asking about their lives, hearing their complaints, pointing out the positive, sympathizing with the tough parts and praying for them. Praying for them as they are there, as they talk, as they are walking out the door and times in between.
Some people to whom I minister believe in God, some people don't. I don't ask questions about their faith; As I listen to their stories their beliefs come to light sooner or later. My job isn't to do anything but listen and pray. Yes, in the eyes of many in the circle of Christianity, this makes me a horrible evangelist. I'm really okay with that.
My ministry isn't just regulated to the ones who come into the office, I also minister to the one's whom I interact with via email and phone calls. I minister as I solve problems, answer questions, reassure, encourage, equip, apologize, point out problems and so much more. My ministry happens in an office building, near the airport, on the 2nd floor, surrounded by lawyers and CPA's, start up tech companies, a chiropractor, an acupuncturist and other businesses of which I have no idea what they do. It's definitely not a church building but it's ministry all the same.