By Mike Menning Founder of Pastor to Pastors, which is now Loving Utah
When building a house we all know how important it is to lay the footings first. After the footings, the foundation is laid and then the structure can be put in place. So it is with building a ministry.
So, God has called you into the ministry. Well, I believe when all of us who accept the Biblical Jesus as our Lord and Savior as a free gift from God. are all called into ministry. Now, having said that, when God calls us into ministry leadership I believe we need to understand a couple of basics.
Someone who I think has a handle on and describes best the concept of understanding of who I am is Neil Anderson in his latest book, Rough Road To Freedom, his memoir. I understand some of theologians don’t agree with Dr. Anderson theologically. I think you will find that almost without exception pastors in Utah who are on the front lines of evangelizing agree with him theologically. I would encourage you to pick up a copy of this book. He does a better job of explaining thisin his book than I can on one page.
FOOTINGS FOR MINISTRY, Part 1: WHO I AM
Many of us think, that what we do determines who we are. For many years if I were asked this question I would explain my past work and what I am now doing. I didn’t understand who I really was until I understood that I am truly, a child of God. When I understood that being adopted into the chosen family of God, the Jewish family of Abraham, I am receiving the inheritance as His child. That is when I began to realize what I am doing is the ministry, not who I am. That is when I began dying to myself, understanding that I have died with Jesus and that I too have been risen to new life.
Romans 8:14-17: “For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.”
It is at this point that I could begin to understand myself and what I am to do with my life here on earth. As a son of the King I can face the challenges and hardships without feeling sorry for myself. Knowing “who I am” takes away the fear and gives me new confidence in my calling to ministry. I John 5:18, says, “We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the One who was born of God keeps them safe, and the evil one cannot harm them.”
When we recognize “who we are” we can go forward in the power of the Spirit and the confidence we need to carry out the ministry.