The Romance of Ministry (Part III)

Jesus had never envisioned for ministry to be associated with fame and notoriety. To the contrary, Jesus trained His disciples to face rejection, accusation, and persecution and to continue to advance the Kingdom of God in the midst of it. Ministry was never meant to be about individuals but about the Kingdom of God! 

In our current church culture, we have created a brand of Christianity that is unBiblical . One of the main ways that we create an unbiblical mindset about ministry is focusing on individuals’ purpose. While purpose is Biblical, it can get translated into carnal meaning due to living in a goal-oriented and driven society. People come to salvation, and for a while they are excited about their new-found relationship with God. But sooner or later the pangs of insecurity and lack of identity causes them to desire more. They may receive a word of prophesy about God’s purpose for them that fuels the fire of wanting to know and do more.

Some Christians find new spiritual vocabulary and couch their old needs/desires in spiritual terms. Instead of talking about their goals, they talk about God’s purpose. In truth, they need greater freedom from the past value system and deliverance from their cultural expectations. They are still in sanctification process, and they need to let go of their old nature and take on their new identity in Christ.

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:8-10

The Bible does not focus on individuals’ purpose instead on God’s purpose! When we read the above passage, we tend to focus on  verse 10, but it is important to read it in conjunction with verses 8-9. The Apostle Paul clearly is focused on God accomplishing His purpose. It is not about our self-effort. We have been saved by grace, and we will continue to do the walk of faith by grace. The moment that we think we need to make something happen, we are walking in carnality, and God is not breathing on it. God has a purpose, but we will not necessarily know that purpose fully in our limited understanding. We are called to trust the Lord and walk with Him.

If people took the above verse to heart and believed that God is going to do the work,  there will be much more peace internally and in relationships. If/when there is something the Lord wants us to do, He will make it clear to us. We don’t need to run to people to find out what our purpose is. We don’t need to advocate or lobby for it, Also, we don’t have to hope for a prophetic word to calm our nerves and insecurities. In addition, we don’t need titles to make us feel important and purposeful. The truth is that we can be very effective without a title, and we can also be ineffective or even dangerous with a title. Titles don’t make a man or a woman Godly, mature, or holy.

Ministry is not meant to be seen as a ladder of promotion neither is it meant to be complicated or political. Jesus had a simple ministry that turned the world upside down. The success of ministry is not in the number of members, ministry titles, or how many books or worship songs have been written.

Can you identify your cultural expectations of ministry? Are there expectations that you need to lay down, so you can enjoy the peace and the security of God in your life? Are you willing to see ministry for what it is Biblically!? The more Godly expectations we have of ministry, the greater stability we will have in our relationship with God. We will also be more effectiveness in the Kingdom and we will have more unity in the body of Christ!

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay




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