An area that I’m constantly having to check myself on is the mentality that “I’ve done my time.” When you’re in ministry, it’s easy to think you’ve earned your right after ## years at the bottom.
“I’ve spent four years doing what I’m told. Now it’s my turn to have the ideas.”
“I’ve cleaned the church’s kitchen every week for the past year, let someone else do it now.”
“My entire ministry career has been serving other people. It’s time for me to take a break from serving.”
In one way or another, I’ve found myself in each of the situations I described above. But the conclusion God always leads me to is that I’m at the bottom so that my foundation can be made strong. So that God could teach me a core lesson about having a fruitful life in ministry.
The mentality at the bottom should not be to get it over and done with and then get promoted. God’s mentality is you learn at the bottom what God needs from you at the top and you retain/use it. That’s why you’re at the bottom.
I read a passage today that showed me how Jesus lived this out at the pinnacle of his ministry.
After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
This was near the end of Jesus’ life on the earth (cf: John 13:1), but he still retained within him the servant’s heart. From the beginning of his ministry to the end, Jesus never forsook that foundation. I believe it is what allowed him to fulfill God’s purpose for his life to the point of death.
Would Jesus have been able to without the foundation? Would you?