Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Success in ministry

If you follow me on Twitter you know that I post links to about 20 articles a day. These articles come from various blogs I read, and I post the ones I think may be helpful to ministers and others in positions of leadership. Some of these posts talk about how to achieve greater success in your life. Many of these are written from a secular perspective and focus on financial success or business success, but very often the principles are transferable to a ministry setting.

A fair question that can be asked is how do we define success in a ministry setting. Is success determined by counting nickles and noses? If so, many bivocational pastors are not going to feel that their ministry is very successful. In fact, the median size church in the US today is 75 people, so most ministers are not going to feel very successful if they compare their numbers with much larger churches. I believe that success is not measured by how many people attend our churches, or what neighborhood we live in, or the kind of car we drive, or any of the other means by which many measure success. Read these definitions of success from well-known Christian leaders.

  • "[Success is] discovering and developing your potential as well as seeing the new opportunities born all around you new every day." - Robert Schuller
  • "Knowing God and his desires for me. Growing to my maximum potential; and sowing seeds that benefit others." - John Maxwell
  • "Success is the continuing achievement of becoming the person God wants you to be and accomplishing the goals God has helped you set." - Charles Stanley
True success has nothing to do with what church you serve or how large you grow your business. Success is achieved when we understand God's purposes for our lives and we pursue those purposes.

If God has called you to serve a small, rural church of 30 people then pour your life into their lives. Give them the best ministry you are capable of giving because these are individuals for whom Jesus Christ gave his life. They deserve the best ministry possible. Look for new opportunities to expand the ministry of that church, and you may be surprised what God will begin to do. And, when you one day stand before God you will hear "Well done, good and faithful servant...."

If you would like to receive those links you can follow me on Twitter @DennisBickers.

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