I'm very excited today as I work toward bringing a prison ministry conference to Georgetown. Last fall I met a wonderful group of ministry workers with Restorative Justice Ministries. I told them I would love to work with them on having a conference more centrally located to include many of the Austin area after care programs. They were more than responsive.
We have a date set that I'm trying to coordinate with a local host church willing to give us the space needed for this event. Those calls are all made and I await a return call sometime this afternoon.
This is something I feel very prepared to do. I'm excited about the work and organizing an event. In an old life I did a lot of regional and national conferences; spoke at several of them and worked in bringing a national conference to the Austin area in 2001. It was an exciting time and connected me with many folks in the community technology arena. Today, as I work bringing together fellow ministry workers for a day of collaboration and strengthening our work I know I am working on something pleasing to the Lord and encouraging for each of us involved.
I am reminded that God is all about relationship; with Him first and one another as He has commanded. We are strengthened and encouraged by our relationship with God and that strength and encouragement moves through our relationships with one another. So many times we are quick to devalue interaction with others working in our same industry or job but we should be reminded that there is little work that doesn't involve other people in some way. Even those most solitary of work either impacts another or provides another with a service or tool for their life; there is little we can do that doesn't have a relational aspect to it.
In ministry, the very definition of the word is relational. Websters defines ministry as "an act or instance of ministering; ministration; service. the service, functions, or profession of a minister of religion." Notice how the word "service" is in both definitional parts. I challenge you to perform the verb "service" without some relational aspect. And in this I am reminded about the very core of what we do!
Whether we are serving the women coming out of prison or working with other ministry workers toward a common goal, we are in an act of service to God, to our clients, to our community and toward one another. I am strengthened by relationship and I strengthen relationships through service; through ministry. What a better way to celebrate and increase my impact for Him than through this upcoming conference and the work that goes into it. I love my job!