When nothing seems right in your ministry, what do you do?


One time I was working with the cutest little single dad family. There were three children. Michael was the middle child in between two bossy sisters. One morning he was really grouchy.

  • Nothing was right.
  • His clothes bothered him.
  • He didn’t like his breakfast.
  • His paper kept moving around when he was trying to draw a picture.
  • He was mad at both sisters.
  • People were just getting in his way and bothering him.

After putting up with his tirades for most of the morning his big sister said,

“Michael what is wrong with you? You have been grouchy all morning. Did you get up on the wrong side of the bed this morning or something?”

Michael got a real thoughtful look on his face and in a few moments said,

“No! No, I got up on the same side I get up on every morning. I can’t get up on the other side because it’s against the wall.”

This incident happened more than twenty years ago and yet I remember that perplexed look on Michael’s little face when he couldn’t figure out how he could have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed.

Michael was always the happy-go-lucky child. Nothing much seemed to bother him, but that morning was just a bad morning for him. The real problem was Michael had gone to bed very late the night before, and he was tired.

Sometimes we all get tired. We get frustrated with the way life is going. We get exhausted and tired of ministering when it seems we are not making a difference in the life of a hurting child. You’ve been there, right? It’s cold outside; it won’t stop raining or snowing and it’s the middle of winter and  you want it to be the middle of spring.

Just like little Michael needed rest, you do as well:

You may need a spiritual rest. Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus withdrew to a solitary place to be ALONE with God and pray. (Mark 1:35)

You may need to get away and alone with the Lord. Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” (Mark 6: 31) 

You might need to go to bed earlier for a few nights. Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)

You may need to visit with a mentor, someone who is in the same type of ministry. Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. (Colossians 4:12)

You might just need a night out with your own personal family and leave the church work alone for a night or maybe two. Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you (Mark 5:19)

A lighter burden

When your life is right with the Father, other things seem to work out too. That doesn’t mean you won’t have your moments and your challenges, but you will have hope and His Word will encourage you. Your burden will be a little lighter.

Do you wonder if the Lord ever looks at us and says,

“What? Did you get up on the wrong side of the bed today?”

We give Him that same perplexed look like my little friend had. We alibi our busy and hectic schedules that keep us away from His word and from Him.

Kids need our best. They need us to be rested physically and spiritually. Kids of divorce especially need for you to be loved enough by the Father that you can give love to them.


This article is updated and adapted from an article originally published on the Kids & Divorce blog on Feb 20, 2014.

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