Work With The People God Has Given You – If God gives you older people, seek to be a blessing to them. If God gives you children, work hard to teach and train them so they can become as God intends. If you have teenagers, invest in them so they can have a happy and productive life for God. If you have above-average people in your ministry, teach and minister on that level. If your people are limited, teach to their needs also. When you minister to people on their level, all can be blessed! Do the best you can with the people you have.
Work With The Church God Has Given You – Many times we have been asked how to build a large deaf ministry in a smaller church or in a church located in a lower population area. It is a great goal to build a large ministry. Some smaller or country churches can reach Deaf people from a large area. You should seek to reach all you can. If there are only 10 Deaf people that live in your area, you may not ever have 25 in your deaf ministry. Do the best you can with the church you have.
Work With The Skills God Has Given You – Not everyone will become a skilled sign language interpreter, preacher, or missionary. But God has given each person certain abilities and skills. If you are an organizer, then organize. If you are a people-person, then welcome people in your church. If you know computers, let God use your ability to help the ministry become more productive. Be creative. Prepare yourself with good training and practice. Ask God to use you, and He will! Ask your pastor how your skills can be used in the church. Do the best you can with the skills you have.
Work With The Vision God Has Given You – “Where there is no vision the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18). What has God put in your heart? Is your vision limited? Are you reaching everyone you can? Could God use you to do more than you are doing now? Never limit God. Do not become comfortable in this world, but always seek to learn, grow, improve, and reach out. Ask yourself, “What if …” questions. What if I learn the Bible better? What if I improve my skills and abilities? What if I set higher goals? What if our church worked together better as a team? Maybe God has not used you mightily because of your limited vision. Lift up your eyes … look on the fields … they are white” (John 4:35). Do the best you can with the vision you have.
Work With The Opportunities God Has Given You – A personal example: As a teenager I realized our church needed bus ministry workers, so I volunteered. The youth choir needed singers, so I joined. When I first learned sign language I was soon told, “You are an interpreter,” so I interpreted, even though that required removing myself from other good ministries, that was God’s will. While I was in college God called me to work with Deaf people. I did not know any Deaf people in that city, so I began teaching sign language to others. Then I heard of a Deaf teenager in a nearby city who did not understand about Jesus, so I went. Later God called me to be a missionary to Deaf people. I surrendered. Although I am not a perfect example, I do believe I am a missionary today because I got in the habit of responding to the opportunities God gave. Some opportunities require resigning from other good ministries to accomplish the goal God has for you. Never limit God. Seek and obey God’s best for your life and ministry. He will always give you what you need. Do the best you can with the opportunities you have.
What has God given you? You may think your ministry is limited. Your way of thinking may be your limitation. God wants every person to effectively do the ministry which He has given them. God will use you within your abilities. Work with what you have. He may later use you beyond your abilities. What has God given you to do? Do it. Focus on the ministry God has for you and He will give the increase.
Contact SWM for helpful ideas and more information about reaching and teaching deaf people in your area.