Discovering Ministry in the Midst of the Stuff
I’m working and writing on the premise that God speaks best through me what He has been speaking in me. God has been prodding me onward and helping me wade through some of the tough stuff in every day ministry.
A missionary associate recently discussed with me an AIMer (short-term missionary) that had arrived on the field. He/she felt bewildered and blameworthy he/she wasn’t doing actual “ministry.” It’s a repetitive regular restlessness among those in kingdom business.
In 1999 I visited one of the executives in his office at World Evangelism Center. I asked if it were possible to do ministry in the midst of his administrative responsibilities. He pointed to a large stack of files and said, “Ministry, every time I want to do ministry, there is all this work staring at me.”
Lest we think this is a phenomenon isolated to World Evangelism Center, or AIMers on the mission field, I wonder how many pastors feel the same way. I recall, after marrying my wife, Linda, receiving a letter from her pastor-Dad. He wondered if he was truly making a difference in the small church he pastored and was close to giving up and throwing in the towel. Thankfully, he faithfully pressed on. Read more
Three Phrases for the Daily Climb
“But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24).
It’s time to take an examination. Don’t sweat it. It won’t hurt or be difficult. Maybe we could call it “taking inventory.” We are specifically looking at three phrases and three phases of life; your life.
For every twenty who enter the ministry, by the time each reach retirement age, only one will still be in the ministry. Consider those that graduated from Bible school or entered ministry with you. How many are no longer in the ministry? (The statistics are not much different when you consider members rather than ministers.)
Too many have come through the front door, have left through the back, never to return. My greatest regret is that we have lost too many that once were part of the family. My greatest tears have been shed over those that have disqualified themselves from the ministry. Some have walked away from the truth. Others have sadly fallen into fornication or adultery. Others became offended, feeling they were abused, or squabbling over maintaining leadership territories and positions. Sadly, like the African proverb says, “When the elephants fight, the grass gets hurt.” Read more
The Ministry of Leadership
The ministry of leadership begins with being cognizant of a beautiful scriptural truth, which is: the sheep belong to God, and not to men. This knowledge has greatly helped to improve the effectiveness of my ministry through the years. A true calling from God followed by submission unto Him, this makes a leader. Read more