What do ministers do?Written by Jeff & Susan Moore
April 12, 2006
Jeff & Susan Moore - Lesotho
Is ministry all about sermons and baptisms, communion and hymns? Ministers serve one another in the name and spirit of Christ. As members of the body of Christ we are all called to serve one another. In fact, we may see people in ministry all around us each and every day.
‘M’e ‘Mathabiso is one of these ministers. She works at a theological seminary, but she has never been inside a classroom. She labors with students, but I’ve never seen her with a book. She’s in ministry, though, and she changes lives - in small ways - everyday.
‘M’e “Mathabiso prepares the daily meals for the Bible School students (those preparing to be lay evangelists) at Morija Theological Seminary in Lesotho. Each day, rain or shine, ‘M’e ‘Mathabiso is up early preparing the fire for the wood stove, gathering ingredients, and organizing her kitchen. Each day she gives the students the food they need to get through another round of classes and daily chores. She’s a part of the answer to their prayers for “daily bread.”
That would certainly be enough. Food is important, and cooking for people can definitely be a ministry. But ‘M’e ‘Mathabiso seems to remember (as Jesus says in the Sermon on the Mount, Mt. 6:25), that “life is more than food.” She can always be heard singing joyous hymns as she stirs pots and gathers wood. Her voice reminds us that life is so full and such a blessing. Her eyes light up when she greets people, and she often offers both hands in warm greeting. Her smile seems contagious. It offers sustenance, just as the food does.
On days when I’m at school over the lunch period, I’ll often eat with the Bible School students. The food’s nothing fancy, but she serves it piping hot (and sometimes a little spicy!). On days when I won’t be eating with the Bible School students, I still try to wander down to see ‘M’e ‘Mathabiso, just for a little of the filling and contagious ‘warmth’ and ‘salt’ she always seems to offer – whether you’re eating or not.
Can you imagine a world in which we all go about our daily tasks thankfully and joyfully as if they were a ministry? Some days, I know, with deadlines and difficulties, conflicts and confusion, it seems hard to imagine stirring the pot in song. On those days, I try to remember one of my favorite ministers – ‘M’e ‘Mathabiso. Neither she nor anyone at Morija Theological Seminary has much money, but she has obviously been richly blessed, and she regularly shares in love!
Jeff and Susan Moore
Jeff and Susan Moore are missionaries with Morija Seminary in Lesotho. Susan serves as a teacher of psychology and English. Jeff serves as a teacher of theology and Biblical studies.
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