Wednesday, October 21, 2009

In Ministry--The Grass Isn't Always Greener

Here's what nobody else is saying...
Just because you've been at your current ministry/job for a couple years and another church/employer calls you, that doesn't necessarily mean that God wants you to move. It may very well be a ploy from the evil one to distract you from the ministry God has called you to lead.

Here's the fact: If you're doing a good job in your current ministry, churches are going to call you! This is a position that many of us have found ourselves in and we're left making decisions based off of feelings or the opinions of the people around us. So, is there a way for someone to really know what God wants them to do?

I think there are many principles throughout Scripture that God gives us to make the big decisions in life. Wisdom is at the center of every one of these principles. If you're at a spot where you're looking across the fence and questioning what you should do, I would encourage you to ask these types of questions and find the wisdom you're looking for:

Questioning a Move:
1. God has you right where you're at for a reason. In the future, how do you think God wants to use you in your current ministry?
2. If you could change one thing about your job, what would it be? If you moved, would it be different or more of the same? -Make sure the answer to this is based off of proof and not promises!
3. If you were to move, would you be maximized for God's glory or your own?
4. What would be your motivation for leaving? Is that reason financial, temporal, or eternal?
5. If I stay where I'm currently at, do I have the potential to increase in influence and broaden my ministry?
6. Do I agree with the philosophy of ministry where I'm currently at? If the answer to this questions is yes, why go to a place where this may not be the case?
7. Has God clearly released me from where I am? If yes, how did He communicate to you that you were released?
8. Who are 3 people that are ( in life/ministry) where I would like to be someday? Talk to these 3 people and let them speak wisdom into your situation.
9. (If you're married) Know where your wife stands and value her discernment and opinions.
10. What does your supervisor or Senior Pastor say about this opportunity? (If you're afraid to talk to them, you may already know his response.) Value the wisdom of those over you.

More words of wisdom...
1. Try to avoid keeping secrets from the people that have given you chances in ministry that you didn't deserve. Include those who have been influential in your life in making big decisions.
2. Surround yourself with people that have made moves before.
3. Know what you're getting in to. It's one thing to be wined, dined and impressed... it's another thing to be stuck doing life with people that you don't like.
4. Don't accept a greater position because you think you're 'worthy' of it. Remember that outside the reality of Christ living within you, that you're completely worthless.
5. If God does choose to move you and it's clear that you're making the right choice, no matter what, don't burn the bridge on the way out. Jobs are easy to get, friends on the other hand, are hard to find.
6. SLOW DOWN the process! If God really wants you to leave where you're at and make the transition to another place, then you ought to be able to slow down, take your time, and make sure you're making the decision for the right reasons. Hasty decision usually indicate unwise choices!
7. What would Jesus Do? (as cheesy as it sounds...) When you ask this question, you will get a genuine response. The question isn't, "What would a good business man do" or "What would a ladder-climber do?," the question is "What would Jesus do?" Jesus made a habit of making decisions based, not off of his own well being, but for the well being of the people surrounding him. He didn't make selfish decisions... he made selfless and sacrificial decisions. Would this move be selfish (so you could get more, be more, etc) or would it be sacrificial (realizing that this life isn't all about you in the first place.)
8. It's okay to walk by faith, but be POSITIVE that if you move, it's because it's God's Will for your life!
9. Consider the fact that if you stay where you're at, your influence and report will continue to build, whereas, if you move, you fight all the same battles again and start from scratch.
10. A requirement for true discipleship is... TIME. In order to grow up true disciples, you have to be willing to grow roots and invest your time into building relationships and growing with the people God's called you to. Where has God called you to grow your roots? -here or there?

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