Make the Connection!

            Is attending a carnival ministry? Sure! It’s a unique way to meet people and build relationships. This year, an out-of-town visitor asked my husband if he was the mayor of our town. The sincere question made us both grin! It is so refreshing at times to see things from a different perspective. Apparently, the man had seen my husband “working the crowd” and was intrigued. What this visitor didn’t know was that my husband is friendly all year long – not just at parades or when he is in the public eye. He genuinely loves people, wants them to feel special and takes the time to remember names. Shaking hands and giving hugs comes naturally to him. But, what do I do when “my pastor” is connecting with people? Often, a smile is all that’s needed.
 
            People are always watching, and that reality is easy to forget. As Christians, we are in essence ‘on parade’ throughout the year. People are intrigued just to see what we will do, how we will handle ourselves and if we really care about those in our community and churches. Why the curiosity? It has nothing to do with us personally, but it has everything to do with who we represent – the church, and ultimately the name of Jesus.
 
            Wow! That got heavy quick, didn’t it? (I thought we were just talking about a carnival in a small town?) Whether or not we participate in our community or our church’s life is being noted by those we have been called to serve. Yes, the ultimate call is on our husbands as pastors, but if we are truly a married couple – we are a team, a yokemate! Our personal witness is part of a package deal and that is often a really good thing. After all, who can complain about sharing a large homemade ice cream, cotton candy or funnel cake with your husband, neighbor or friend - right?
 
            The next time you have the opportunity to connect with others in your community or church, make the most of that opportunity! Check out Ephesians 5. Paul gives us a great “How To” List to help us live a Godly witness in our communities. Memorizing verses 15-16 could even be a helpful tool since we are reminded to “Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” As opportunities come along your path this week, choose to be wise, be careful and do your best to share the love of Jesus!

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