Today, for the good of my ministry… I played video games. It was terrible.
I’m going to be marrying a couple soon. The man in particular doesn’t have any friends that live anywhere nearby. So I decided to do a “bachelor party” for him. There’s a bar not far from here where, if you buy a drink, you have access to a bunch of stand-up arcade games for free. I figured it would be a fun afternoon. I invited him and a member of the church he’s somewhat close with, and the three of us were off.
And you know what? It was fun. Just a good, relaxing time. My treat all the way, so they didn’t have to worry about money. We ended up playing the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles arcade game and beating it. (It’s pretty easy to do, especially when you don’t have to keep feeding it quarters.)
There was a lot of laughter, and in the end, hopefully some growth in relationship. I think so, at least.
Sometimes ministry is hard. Sometimes it tears at the heart and drags you into depression. Sometimes you weep with those who weep.
But sometimes… sometimes you get to laugh with those who laugh.
I will admit: It was hard for this introvert pastor. This morning we had a church council meeting, worship, and Bible study, all before my heading out to the bar. A normal Sunday leaves me happy but very exhausted. Today leaves me happy, yes, but also very, very exhausted.
But you know what? Worth it.
I hope the other guys had as much fun as I think they did. But I know for me… it was a welcome chance to laugh, play together, and just enjoy life with those I’m serving.
Look, ministry really is hard. There’s so much pain and sorrow in this world. But even in this broken world, God has given us blessing after blessing. He cheers our hearts. And for this, and for this moment I got to laugh… I am thankful.