When I look at a ministry’s effectiveness, or the impact I’m having as a believer on my world, the questions I ask can be more important than any other factor. My questions must zero in on the heart of the matter, and not measure the outward appearances. For example, when Jesus’ was approached by a rich young ruler, the man’s outward status wasn’t the issue. Neither was the amount of money he could give to the local synogogue. Jesus put his finger on his heart when he asked the man to give up everything to follow Him. The amount the man could give wasn’t important. What was important was that the influential ruler abandon the source of status and personal identity in order to identify with Christ.
If I’m going to build a transformational church, ministry, or para-church organization, being able and willing to detach myself from what is seemingly important, and ask questions that reach for the heart of a matter is central to the success of building a biblical, transformational, prevailing ministry or Christian life.
I don’t believe that size or the amount of a church’s budget is the issue, or how much I can give into the weekly offering plate is the measuring stick that is important to heaven. I don’t believe that a particular denomination, worship style or theological paradigm is central to the Jesus’ goals. Like Christ, I believe we must look beyond those measuring sticks which are easily quantified, and like his interaction with the rich ruler we must abandon those things which identify us, and reach for the heart of the matter.
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Tailoring Ministry to Meet the Cultural Needs
Jesus approach to different individuals was tailored to the person, and was meant to create in intimate life changing encounter with Him. He treated the rich ruler differently than the Pharisees, and Nicodemus (who came to him at night) differently than the woman dragged to his feet in broad daylight. Yet each encounter moved the person to engage Him – personally, intimately, and uniquely based on the person’s own needs.
Our call is to be Christ-centric, to engage the culture, and see it transformed into his image. (Matt 5.13-16) This process can only begin if we are transformed ourselves into His image, likeness, character, personality, taking his priorities on as our own.
We are called to change the world. (Matt 28.18-20)
How effective is your ministry carrying out that goal and your life contributing to Jesus call? (2 Cor 5.17-21)