In an age where a lot of attention is placed on Web sites, Twitter followings and making friends/fans on Facebook, it can be easy to forget the importance of focusing on the basics in our ministries.
Now don’t get me wrong, Web sites, Twitter and Facebook are great tools and, in this digital age, it’s important to utilize them to reach the world (after all, it’s where you will find them). But once we do attract someone to our ministry, what basics are we intentional about in our teaching, connecting and discipleship?
As I was thinking on these things, I came up with a few key points:
1. We can’t do the extraordinary until we “get” the ordinary.
Countless programs and record attendance don’t necessarily mean we are really doing ministry. Real success is measured by change and depth. Those extraordinary goals we have for our ministry can only be achieved when we focus relentlessly on the basics of sharing the Gospel and developing disciples that do the same.
2. Basics are never developed at microwave speed.
As humans we fall into the trap of measuring success in hours and days. We want quick results. After all, we have fast food, automatic banking and even instant messaging. But God’s timing is eternal. It takes a lifetime to become what He desires for us. Spiritual maturity in our ministries only comes through experiences filled with the twists and turns life has to offer.
3. Everyone needs reminders from time to time.
How “seasoned” is your ministry? What percent have been Christians for much of their lives? While this group is certainly a blessing (and possible outcome) of your ministry, it can be the most susceptible to complacency. Church attendance can become more of a habit than a passion and the salvation experience can be a memory that is referenced instead of an active, vibrant realization of each day. Whether a new believer or seasoned follower, everyone can benefit by pausing from time to time and focusing on what it really means to be a Christ follower. And that pause keeps us focused on what really matters.
If ministry is making you lose sight of the reason behind it, step away and refocus. What are some of the ways you zoom out?