My Silent Ministry

One Sunday morning I found myself sitting in Meeting for Worship and felt the Spirit stirring within me. I was aware of it for a while as I tried to test myself to ensure that what I was feeling was not my own ego. I had nothing to say to those present and yet I was still being moved, so much so that I began to tremble, gently at first, but as the minutes passed my heart began to pound and the shaking became uncontrollable. I still did not understand why I was being so strongly moved to minister and so I tried to subdue the feeling. 

Suddenly, I was up and on my feet in an involuntary movement, one moment sat and the next stood upright before all of the Friends present that morning. I opened my mouth to speak, not knowing what would be given to me to say;……… nothing……… absolutely nothing and a complete blank in mind and in mouth. So I closed my mouth, only to be made to open it again, but still nothing. I closed my mouth again only for a repeat performance. And again, and again. This went on a few more times until suddenly I sat down having said absolutely nothing, not even one single syllable!

I sat quite calm afterwards, but confused as to why I had so overwhelmingly been made to stand and then be given nothing. After the Meeting for Worship had concluded I stayed for the usual tea and biscuits and a chat. Not one person asked me anything about this unusual episode that morning and I remained quiet too, happy not to have to try to explain.

So why did this happen? I can only conclude that the message was for me personally. I was being tested, would I remain loyal to the Spirit wanting me to stand. Would I make a fool of myself by standing to Minister in the name of Christ and then say nothing, repeatedly opening and closing my mouth fish like? Or would I try to cover up any embarrassment and try to give my own words as if they had been given to me to say by the Spirit?

I have found in the past that if I have given Ministry faithfully as directed by the Spirit then when I have sat down afterwards I have always felt at ease, comfortable that I have done as commanded and left with an inward peace. However there have been a few occasions when I have Ministered and on sitting down afterwards I have felt uneasy and uncomfortable. These times have been accompanied by admonishment by the Spirit because I have overstepped my mark, I have felt very sad on these occasions. However, after this so called Ministry I felt comfortable and at ease, the same as at other times of following what the Spirit wanted of me.


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