Have you ever had one of those days when you’re in the middle of a task and one thing after another disrupts your ability to finish?
Greg Campbell is the Assistant Facilities Manager at Ventura Missionary Church. Before our campus was closed due to the COVID 19 pandemic, it was not unusual for Greg to be in the middle of a project when someone would wander into the area where he was working and ask for help. What was unusual was Greg’s response to these individuals. Greg didn’t just sigh and point; he would cheerfully walk the person to where they needed to go, and if they needed something, Greg would go out of his way to render assistance.
God is the only One who is truly good, but as we abide in Christ, as Greg’s life demonstrates, we can display His goodness toward others, even when it’s not convenient. Since the world was launched into quarantine, Greg is learning even more about how to bear this fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22-23.
At the beginning of the world’s new reality, Greg was stressing about a lot of things – would he have a job, and if he did, how would it change? He also wondered how the church will be able to care for and protect people when they begin to return to onsite services, groups, and activities.
Greg began to spend extra time in the mornings reading God’s Word. The theme that was being taught during Ventura Missionary’s livestream services was saturating his week, as he read and re-read the supporting Bible passages mentioned, and listened to the daily encouragement videos which highlight other Scripture verses on the same topic.
As the weeks went by, the extra time with God in His Word began to produce a peace. Since that shift in his spirit, Greg feels more connected to God’s Spirit. When something comes along that interrupts his day, Greg thinks about it as an opportunity to apply the peace God has given him in practical ways, and in so doing, he is actually sharing the gospel (good news) of peace with others. James 2:16 says, “If one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,’ but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?” Greg doesn’t just tell people to go in peace, he demonstrates goodness by meeting needs. He does so as he goes about his day, but he also serves at church and his community. He faithfully volunteers throughout the school year with a ministry called, “Good News Clubs,” he volunteers each summer at Royal Family Kids, a camp experience for local foster kids, and he and his wife, Lana, have facilitated groups for the Rooted Discipleship Experience that Ventura Missionary hosts twice a year.
Part of what motivates Greg to do good for people is remembering what God has done for him and trying to see others through God’s eyes. Greg says, “In those moments when someone interrupts what I am doing, extending goodness toward people trumps everything.”
Greg says, “Jesus had interruptions, and He had a way of being in the moment with people. The Holy Spirit helps me remember that God has me in interruptions for a reason, so I cooperate. Once I take that step of obedience, I experience tremendous fulfillment.”
Greg goes on to say, “When we’re faced with these kinds of forks in the road, we can think of ourselves, or we can cooperate and obey. Responding to God’s guiding Spirit has to be cultivated. Sometimes, we fail to cooperate, but we can confess, and the Lord is there to pick us up. We’re still connected to the Vine. He’s just pruning us, so we’ll bear fruit.”
When asked what else he would to share, Greg responded, “All the things I do are because I’m His. When I’m tempted to be selfish, I remind myself that I’m not my own.” (1 Corinthians 6:19) Greg knows he was bought with a price (vs. 20) – the blood of Jesus, His Savior. That sacrifice is the ultimate example of goodness.