Ministering to Jesus

Have you ever been consciously aware that you were being ministered to? As I look back on 2013, that’s one of the experiences that stands out. at the end of October, my husband, Danny, was rushed to the hospital for what was the beginning of a two-month marathon of hospitalization and rehabilitation. During those difficult days, friends would call or come by to check on us, sit with us, pray with us, talk to us … they ministered love and encouragement and comfort to us. Nurses and CNAs, as well as doctors, would not only care for Danny’s physical needs, they intentionally joked with him or exhorted him or quietly slipped in and out so as not to disturb him. They ministered to him.

After more than two months in the hospital and in rehab, Danny came home on Dec. 27. I find myself now counting pills, doing laundry, fixing meals, scheduling appointments and supervising home health care. While being busier than I ever have been, I also try to be intentional about reading Scripture to him, praying for him in his hearing, encouraging him through words and deeds, and hosting dinners with friends and family he enjoys. I find myself in the role of ministering to my husband.

And that has made me wonder … are we to minister to Jesus? And if so, what does ministry to Him, not just for Him, look like?

Our Ministry to Him

The Ministry of Practice

What was one of the fundamental roles of the priest in the Old Testament according to Exodus 28:41? Deuteronomy 10:8? (NKJV)

Look up the word ministry or minister in the dictionary and write out the definition that seems appropriate.

What do you think it means to minister to the Lord through your deeds and actions? See 1 John 3:17-18, Matthew 25:31-40 and Romans 15:15-17.

How are you ministering to Jesus through your practical deeds for others?

The Ministry of Prayer

What do you learn about the ministry of prayer from the following passages? 1 Kings 8:35-40, 54-61; 2 Chronicles 7:13-15; Acts 12:1-11; Ephesians 6:18-20; Philippians 1:18-21.

Who has entered into a ministry of prayer on your behalf?

Give a word or phrases that are the same or similar in each of the following passages: 1 Thessalonians 5:17, Romans 1:9-10, 2 Timothy 1:3 and Colossians 4:12.

What do you need to change or adjust so that you cultivate a consistent, constant prayer life?

How are our prayers described in Revelation 5:8?

Relate Revelation 5:8 to Revelation 8:4, Exodus 30:8 and Malachi 1:11. What does this mean to you?

If your prayers are like sweet incense to Him, how fragrant is your prayer life?

The Ministry of Praise

What is one of God’s purposes in choosing us to belong to Him, according to Ephesians 1:3-6?

How is this purpose repeated in Ephesians 1:11-12?

Give phrases from the following verses that indicate our praise of Him is a ministry to Him: 1 Chronicles 23:5, 28-31; 2 Chronicles 8:12-14, 30:21; Habakkuk 3:17-19; Hebrews 13:15; 1 Peter 2:9; Revelation 4:5-8 and 8:3-4.

If possible, locate a hymnal and read the words of your favorite hymn as your song of praise to the Lord. Or use one of David’s Psalms, such as Psalm 19 or Psalm 33, as your song of praise.

In your own words, write out your prayer of praise as your ministry to the Lord.

The Ministry of Presence

How did the women of Matthew 27:55-56, Luke 23:44-49 and John 19:25 minister to Jesus?

What do you think it means to bear the burdens of others? See Galatians 6:2.

How does God do this for us, according to Psalm 68:19?

In what way can you offer Him the ministry of presence by offering it to others?

How can you offer your presence to the Lord? Read Genesis 19:27, Leviticus 9:5-6, 2 Chronicles 20:13, Psalm 46:10 and Habakkuk 2:1.

Take a few moments today and sit quietly before the Lord in prayer, telling Him you are available for whatever He wants to say to you. Then listen. Write down the thoughts that come to your mind. Then pray them back to the Lord.

His Ministry to Us

The quietly thrilling truth is that while we minister to Him, He ministers to us.

The Ministry of Practice

Put Isaiah 64:4 into your own words. What do you think God could not do for you? What would He do, if you would ask?

What are some of the things He has said He will do for us in Psalm 84:11? Isaiah 40:28-31? Isaiah 41:10? Romans 8:32?

The Ministry of Prayer

Describe Jesus’ present ministry from Hebrews 7:25. What does it mean to you to know that Jesus is praying for you today?

What role does Jesus play in securing answers to your prayers? See John 16:23.

The Ministry of Praise

Write out Zephaniah 3:17 in your own words, substituting your name for the personal pronouns.

What does this mean to you?

The Ministry of Presence

When does God promise to be present in our lives, according to Isaiah 43:1-2? Psalm 23:4? Matthew 28:19-20? Hebrews 13:5-6?

According to the dictionary, ministering means to do things that are needful or helpful; to aid. We minister to Jesus when we serve or help others as we would serve or help Him. When we do, ministry becomes our joy. I know …

So this Valentine’s Day, as you send out cards or do things for those you love, take time to reflect on how you can offer the gift of ministry to Him. Then do it. And as you do it, open your heart to receive His valentine of ministry to you. Your joy will be complete.

©2014 Anne Graham Lotz