Ministry: Keep It Simple

Head waters of the Jordan River at Caesarea Philippi

Head waters of the Jordan River at Caesarea Philippi (March 2013)

Like some of you who read this blog, my vocation, my way of providing for our family is by serving in  ministry. As such, I found Jesus instructions to his disciples as they prepared to go out in ministry (as The Message puts it) very helpful:

Mark 6:9 MSG – “Don’t think you need a lot of extra equipment for this. You are the equipment. No special appeals for funds. Keep it simple.

I often feel like I need a lot more to do the ministry Jesus has invited me to do. But my main equipment for ministry is just what Jesus is doing in me and through me. I am the equipment Jesus is using. I am a person in whom Jesus is coming to more deeply abide. This is His gift and His work. I am the beneficiary, as are those with whom I spend time.

“Jesus, Your presence with me and in me is the greatest resource I have. Apart from you, the rest of my equipment are like unplugged appliances. All of my knowledge, insight, or creativity is powerless apart from You. I’m grateful that you are with me when I speak to groups or travel to lead retreats.

Reflect: What ministry opportunities have you been given? What have you believed you needed but didn’t have to faithfully serve? How might Jesus be reminding you that you yourself are the main piece of equipment he wishes to use?

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2 thoughts on “Ministry: Keep It Simple

  1. Hello Alan,

    Recently I sent you a note about not going away, keep writing, for those of us who are not “professional” pastors. I wanted to let you know how important you became to us yesterday.

    I am in a group of a dozen women who have met for Bible study for almost 20 years. I haven’t been that long, but I bring something to the group because of Dallas Willard and his followers that have influenced me. I think our youngest member is about 55, so we are elders in the sense that Jim Wilder describes elders. We are spiritual leaders in the lives of the, what is becoming younger, people around us. We are currently in a study about the Holy Spirit and we had a lively discussion yesterday afternoon about hearing God, our heart and how to respond when things flare up.

    Your blog yesterday was so perfect, I came right home from study and sent it out to the group. Eileen started asking us to pray for Rebecca at least ten years ago. It has been a long and difficult journey for Rebecca. The fact that she has come to a point that the first words out of her mouth was “I’m sorry” is definitely a God thing!!!

    Thank you for not forgetting us out here in the world, that won’t make it into the chairs at your training. What you do matters. :)


  2. Thank you, Ginger, for your comment. As my blogging mostly transitions to The Leadership Institute blog next week, I still intend to write for an audience much broader than just those who are “paid” Christian leaders. My review of a number of posts that will go up in the next few weeks over there encourages me that many will benefit from what will be shared. I’ll be posted that link on this blog when it goes live next week.

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