Ministry can be tiring, especially when you feel like you have to do everything yourself. Kingdom work never stops. There are always more people to care for and more opportunities to explore. Wouldn’t it be great if you could multiply your ministry without having to do something extra? It’s possible if you make up you mind to never minister alone.
Moses learned the hard way that it is “not good” to lead alone (Exodus 18:13-26). Elijah shared his ministry with Elisha (1 Kings 19:19-21, 2 Kings 2). Jesus choose twelve disciples, walked through life with them, trained them, sent them out, and held them accountable (Mark 6:7-21, 30). Paul continued this practice and always surrounded himself with a long list of assistants and associates, Timothy being the most notable (Colossians 1:1, 4:7-17).
Christian leaders who want to make a big impact on the world need to make one small decision: to never minister alone. Do as much ministry as you possible can with other people who are willing to learn. Not just for the sake of accountability, but for the sake of mentoring. The church is in desperate need of more leaders, so don’t waste your leadership experiences on yourself; share them with someone. This isn’t just for pastor and church staff. This is for anyone who is working to make a difference in the world for the sake of Jesus Christ and the Gospel. In the short term, the people that you bring along with you will encourage and challenge you. In the long term, they will multiply your efforts and continue making an impact when you are gone.
Here are 3 question to help you multiply your ministry:
1. Who can I invite to join me in ministry?
2. What do I do that I can share with someone else?
3. How can I help other people catch a vision for ministry mentoring?
Ministry is similar to gardening in that both activities require a lot of time and energy before anything develops. It takes patience and dedication to prepare the soil, sow the seed, and water and fertilize the seed so it has a chance to grow. The Apostle Paul made this comparison while warning the Corinthian believers against jealousy and strife. As “fellow workers” in God’s field, we are responsible to plant and water as we have opportunity, even if we aren’t the ones who ultimately produce the harvest (1 Corinthians 3:5-9).
Summer can be a tough for churches, like it is in the garden. Most churches experience a dip in attendance, participation, and even giving as members celebrate holidays and travel with their families over the summer break. Numbers of guests may dry up as they try to make the most of summer’s long days and warm weather. In ministry, like gardening, water is especially important during the hot, dry summer months. In ministry, watering could mean investing in a budding ministry relationship or it could involve some extra planning and preparation for the upcoming fall. In addition, watering should include prayer remember that it is God, Himself, who brings the harvest.
What will you do this week to “water” your ministry?
What will you do this week to invite God’s provision and blessing?
How do you define leadership?
Oswald Sanders may have been the first Christian writer to define leadership as influence. In his classic book first published in 1967, Sanders writes, “Leadership is influence, the ability of one person to influence others to follow his or her lead” (Spiritual Leadership, 27). Decades latter, internationally recognized leadership guru, John Maxwell, continues to define leadership as “one life influencing another.”
According to this definition, we all have some capacity and responsibility as leaders. So what kind of influence do you have on those around you? Are you using your influence to lead others to follow Jesus Christ more closely?
That is what this website is about and that is why I’m introducing a new Monday blog series on leadership called Devotional Thoughts for Leaders. This series will offer short (250 words or less), bible-based devotional thoughts to empower and encourage Christian leaders and leadership teams. Each installment can be used by individual leaders for their own personal development or shared with others in a mentoring relationship, staff meeting, or leadership retreat. Please feel free to adapt them, expand them, and share them with others in your circle of influence.
If you find any these posts particularly helpful, I’d love to hear about! You can use the comment box at the end of each post share your feedback. You can also contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or @jeremydcouture.