Last night I had the privilege of speaking at Pipeline, the college & twentysomethings community here at the church I attend. Loved it! Was a ton of fun. As always, I spend some time reflecting on the job I did over the course of the next 24 hours. I might ask questions such as,
Did I use my time well? Did I spend too much time trying to entertain as opposed to ministering? Was I too serious when I did not have to be? Did I make good use of stories? Was God’s Word central in what I shared? Did I spend too much time setting up the message which resulted in less time for the “meat” of what God put in my heart? Was I obedient? In other words, did I share the word God told me to share? Or did I ramble and beat around the bush? Was the word clear? Did people walk away knowing the one thing I wanted them to walk away with? What would I do different next time with this same word? And mainly, was Daddy overall pleased with this word?
I am constantly pursuing more and more simplicity in my life. This is true for my speaking as well. The art of questioning and the act of examining are important instruments in this process. When a speaker is clear, concise, and knows where they are goin with what they are sharing, that, in my estimation, is both persausive and powerful. As I reflected on last night, this thought came to my mind: Whenever I am called upon to preach/teach/share, I want to always minister three things–faith, hope, and love. Paul wrote, “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love” (1 Corinthians 3:13). I want Jesus people to grow in faith because they hear me speak. I want hope to fill people’s heart’s because they sat under my teaching. And I want, to use Paul’s language, “God’s love [to be] poured out into [their] hearts” (Romans 5:5) because I ministered God’s word. Now, I am aware that I cannot force someone to receive or respond. I am referring more to my motive, my filter, my vision when speaking. The cry of my heart should be, “Lord, may people grow in faith, hope, and love because I ministered Your word.”
I believe this blog is important for ministers for the following reason: Ministry, too often, becomes more about the minister and how he feels about himself/herself than actually seeing and ministering to the people that actually exist in the real world outside of his/her own ego.
I want to be humble Lord. Holy Spirit, please make me humble Lord. Dependent on you. Ministry about you and your people, not how I appear or want ot appear. Vanity is dangerous. It lurks around every corner in our society, and even around every corner in the church world. Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Matthew 5:8).