By Cecil Willis
One of the songs we sing says “there is much to do; there’s work on every hand. . .” There are many passages that teach that we must be busy in the Lord’s work. Jesus said, “We must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work” (Jno. 9:4). Paul taught that we must “abound in the work of the Lord” (1 Cor. 15:58).
Yet some members of the church stand around idle and wonder what there is to do. Some even complain that they are never “called on” to do anything. They act as though they are guests in the Lord’s vineyard and someone ought to specify everything they are to do.
Recently I visited a congregation nearby. They had in their tract rack a card which they asked members of the congregation to fill out to indicate what services they would perform as a member of the church. It might surprise you to learn that there are so many things that have to be done about a congregation. For years many have enjoyed the benefits of other people’s labors, never offering to accept their own responsibility and to do their share of the work.
Following are some of the things that have to be done. Which ones are you willing to help in doing? These jobs are listed in order that you might see that there is work for every church member. Look over the things to be done, and make yourself available to do them. Here are some of the tasks someone must do: (1) Preach; (2) Teach classes for all ages; (3) Alternate as teacher; (4) Take Teacher Training Course; (5) Lead singing; (6) Make announcements; (7) Publicly read scripture; (8) Lead prayer; (9) Preside at Lord’s table; (10) Assist at Lord’s table; (11) Welcome visitors; (12) Visit sick; (13) Visit new members, prospects and visitors; (14) Visit absentees and delinquent members; (15) Arrange a home Bible study; (16) Lead a home Bible study; other office work; (20) Work on mimeographing; (21) Wash and fill Communion utensils; (22) Work around building; (23) Clean building; (24) Attend special classes (such as Men’s and Women’s classes) to prepare for more effective service.
Have you ever thought about who attends now to many of these responsibilities? Somebody has to do so. Whether you can preach, lead singing, or teach a class, there are many of these things that must be done that anyone can do. Are you doing your part of the work? Or is someone bearing your part of the load in your stead? We do not all have the same capabilities, but we all have some ability. Out of this list of things to be done, everyone can find enough to keep him busy. Let us all “abound in the work of the Lord.”
Truth Magazine, XVIII:50, p. 13
October 24, 1974