Our Church community is getting bigger. It is a great blessing from the Lord to see so many people coming to our weekly gatherings. The hard side of this reality is that the bigger a Church becomes, the more focused the pastor must be in his job. I find myself asking questions like, “What are the primary activities I am gifted to do?”
This week I have been thinking about this very specifically as I plan for 2019. Here are what I see as the primary motivations in my ministry.
1. I want all people to know Jesus as their Savior.
By far my greatest motivation is for people to come to a saving relationship with Jesus. I preach the message of the cross. I explain the grace of Jesus. I do everything I can to bring people to Jesus.
2. I want people to become spiritually mature.
Once you make Jesus your Savior, the journey is just beginning. God calls us to live with Jesus as the Lord of our lives. We are to grow in our faith until we become Christlike in our behavior. I encourage people to read their Bible, learn what it means and apply it to their life in every way. I want to help people grow in their faith.
3. I want people to connect with other believers.
Faith is a journey, and we are not to travel alone. God wants us to be surrounded by people who will encourage us, challenge us, and teach us. The Church is not a place where we come to worship God; it is a group of people who worship God coming together for connection in the name of Jesus. I want to facilitate ways for people to bond on a deeper level.
4. I want people to find a second chance in Jesus.
The people who accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior and come together as a Church are bound to make mistakes and fall short of the faith they proclaim. Christians are a bunch of hypocritical sinners. That fact can push us away from faith or draw us closer to him as our only hope. I want people to know the grace that saves us again and again.
These are not an exhaustive list of the motivations for ministry. These are just the ones I feel called to in my work for Jesus. Other pastors focus their attention in other areas ranging from social justice to working with the needy to prison ministry to defending our faith. Those are also noble causes, but those are not the areas God has gifted me to serve. These are my areas of ministry. I pray he brings people around me who can help us to be a complete body of Christ.
Now, let me ask you some questions, “What are your specific areas of ministry, in what ways has God gifted you to serve his kingdom, and what moves and motivates you as you serve him?”
Knowing the answers to those questions will help you to say “no” to things that are a distraction and “yes” to things that will make an impact for eternity.