While serving a church in Ohio I had an idea. (I have since learned not to copy models, but to capture principles.) Driving along, positive Christian music playing on the radio, I thought that sounds like workout music. Why not Christian workout/aerobics? Not that I’ve ever been one to consistently workout and I’ve never been part of an aerobics class. But why not offer it for others. I knew we had a young lady in our church who was helping lead aerobics and women’s workout classes at the local community center. I approached her with the idea and asked her to pray about it.
Nothing came of that conversation. Quite the opposite, within a few months God led that family out of state with her husband’s career. I accepted the non-response and their move as God’s way of saying it was not a ministry for our church – at least not at that time.
Two years later a young lady in our church called requesting an appointment to speak with me. At the meeting, she shared that she had been praying about a ministry opportunity and wanted to know if it would be possible in our church and if I would pray about it with her. The ministry in question: a women’s aerobics class for the women of the church and the community. She had seven personal trainer, workout, and aerobics certifications, as well as first responders first aid (in case of an emergency in a class).
I could hardly believe what was happening. I had let the idea die two years earlier. Now, sitting in front of me was a woman with a passion to not only help women get in shape but to share the love and gift of Jesus at every class. She had it worked out, Christian music, scripture, personal testimonies, a complete ministry package. At the conclusion of our meeting and prayer time together, I asked her to go home and write it as a ministry proposal.
We began the ministry, ladies only. Her first class had more than twenty ladies attend. By the third session, 29 were in attendance. Some were members of our church. And those members brought some of their friends as well. Out of the first class we had women not only getting in physical shape and improving their outlook on life, but we also had some committing their life to Christ and attending church for the first time in their lives.
God’s timing is always right. I have no doubt God placed that ministry on my mind two years prior to our meeting that morning. If for no other reason, to prepare me for when the timing was right when His plan was to unfold. He brought to me the person He had Called to lead that ministry. I did not have to go looking. She had the passion, desire, and the certifications to make this God’s ministry.
I have never tried to look for someone to start an aerobics ministry in any church since then. It was right for that church, at that time. The gifting, the timing, the ministry was not within the prevue of the other churches. However, the principles remain the same for the right ministries in every church. Don’t copy models, capture principles.
For more on capturing principles, contact George Yates.
George Yates is an Organizational Health Strategist and coach, assisting churches, organizations, and individuals in pursuing God’s purpose for life.