Saturday, July 18, 2009

Helpmate in Ministry

Billy Sunday once said, "Praise your wife, even if it scares her at first." Does your spouse fear when you are being kind, or say a kind word. More important, how high in value is your spouse. I know I do not thank my wife enough for standing by my side in the ministry. I try to say thank you, but then I know the sacrifice, the work, the time, and the energy she puts into the ministry alongside me.

There are many young people going into ministry who may say, "Ministry is my calling, and my spouse has no need of being involved. The churches I candidate to must understand that she is not a free laborer for the Lord."

My wife would argue that she is called to work along my side, and that ministry is package, which she is very happy to be a part of. She is valued by those who seek her counsel, the children she ministers to, and those whom she is able to demonstrate her gifts of hospitality to.

She is not paid in monetary amounts, and she gets tired. However, she understands the bigger picture of the Kingdom. It is the Kingdom she willingly keeps in mind when she works alongside me as helpmate, advisor, and friend.

Yes, I know we should set limits and be responsible with the most precious resource we have on earth; our spouse. I am not saying that you should sit back and let a church walk on your spouse. However, your spouse should be part of your ministry. They should be as involved as you expect any parishioner in your church to be involved. Too many seeking or in ministry are willing to protect their personal time and family involvement, while expecting high commitment from members within the church. Be sure your commitment levels in your ministry begin within your own life, and your own family example.

- Keep on the Journey with Jesus today

Monday, July 6, 2009

Ride the Wave God Sends You

Jesus said that we should be watchful of the seasons, and know when the times are approaching. He compared farmers who watch the seasons to know when to plant or harvest. As ministers much of the success we will have will be due to learning to ride the waves God sends our way.

We may go through weeks, or even months of normal everyday activity. We sometimes get lost in the mundane, and then all of a sudden many things start happening in our churches. It may be that several families start coming all near the same time, or several people get saved. Maybe a new ministry is launched that has a far larger reach than expected. Then an older person who has been struggling for many years comes forward for prayer, and soon several others are at the altar renewing their passion for Christ.

We need to preach "in season, and out of season," as Paul instructs Timothy. That is to continue to minister to people no matter what is going on, or how little there may seem to be going on. Yet, we must always keep our eyes open. Often what looks to be a small breakthrough will have far reaching effects in lives of others. Churches that haven't seen a salvation in years may open the door by one or two people coming to Christ. We need to be aware of God's moving among us. We must ride the wave of blessings and open doors he may send our way.

We are in a season of blessing, after a year of rebuilding. I made the decision a month ago to make a new attempt at building a new youth program, after have a shut down a year ago. In the process we hosted an event for youth and young adults. Over the last year our young adult Bible study averages about four or five people. By combining the fun event, in an attempt to bring in youth we actually added four or five more people to our young adults. These four or five additions within one month are already getting involved in ministries, such as helping with VBS.

We have been able to reach a few young teens, which was the goal. However, God sometimes takes the wave in directions we do not expect. Through one ministry plan we may see other ministries blessed.

Watch what God is doing. Where are the open doors He is sending your way? Where do you see the current wave of your ministry? Get on and ride. If your in doldrums, just pray and wait, because another wave of blessing is soon coming your way.

- Keep on the journey for Jesus in your lives