Yesterday, I met a chaplain for the sheriff's office. Her job is to go to homes to officially inform families of the death of a loved one. She "volunteers" to do this. I asked her why. She told me that she was "informed" of the death of her sister by a telephone call because there wasn't anyone available to come to the home. Because she "volunteers" she can comfort the family with a prayer and a hug if appropriate. She said that God has used her greatest tragedy and transformed it into her greatest ministry.
Dr. James Dobson became a child psychologist in great part because of the pain of his middle school years. He wanted to help others who might have suffered in similar ways.
Rick Warren who is mourning the tragic death of his son just a few weeks ago, wrote this on his twitter feed:
"If you give it to God, He transforms your test into a testimony, your mess into a message, and your misery into a ministry."
We may feel as if our failure disqualifies us from ministry, when in fact God uses our weakness to bring others to healing and help.
2 Corinthians 11:30
30 If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness.
2 Corinthians 12:9
9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.