I walked out of the door to the middle school so exhausted I barely felt able to open the car door. Spending an hour and a half with one- and two-year-olds was exhausting enough, but packing up the furniture and toys into the moveable crates of the church plant we were a part of was almost too much to do after the last child left. As I trudged to my car, I asked myself the question, Do I really enjoy this?
The answer was yes. I loved working with the kids, and I knew every children’s ministry volunteer was really needed. But listing those reasons didn’t make the ache go out of my arms and legs. I began to think ahead to the next day at work and found myself wishing for more time in my weekend. I still had laundry that needed to be done. I had emails to catch up on and a writing assignment I hadn’t finished, and I still had grocery shopping that needed to be done for the week. All of a sudden my “why I shouldn’t volunteer” list began to look a lot longer than “why I should.”
Ever been there? Of course you have. When you give, whether it’s your time, skills, or money, there’s a cost involved. As I drove home, a war waged inside me. I didn’t want to be a what-is-in-it-for-me girl when it came to my generosity. I wanted to make a difference. I wanted to be a God-use-me-up daughter of the King.1