Ministry Journey Blog

Thoughts on Ministry

11 Oct

Ministry Reflections

Posted in Uncategorized on 11.10.12 by Merlyn

While I my primary nature is undoubtedly introverted, I also tend to be a fairly reflective person. During various seasons of life and ministry, I have found myself focusing my reflective moments on differing things. At this moment in life, I have been reflecting quite a bit on my ministry passions, gifting and non-negotiables. This past week I spent about four days at our national denominational gathering. It was a gift as my time there created many opportunities for reflection through my own involvement and leadership, the speakers, the time of worship and the many great conversations. While I did not necessarily learn new things, I was reminded of the things that matter the most to me that had slipped to the back of my heart and mind, I was challenged to think more carefully about my call and the call of the church and I was given new language, ideas and hope both for ministry and the church. Combined with personal reflection that was already occurring as well as the place in life that I now find myself, here are my current reflections on ministry…


The non-negotiables…

There are some non-negotiables for me when it comes to life and ministry. We live in a world that is increasingly complicated and complex and as God’s story continues to unfold, I believe that while we continue to learn there are some things that are not flexible in any context. The first of these is Christ. The nature and person of Christ is a non-negotiable for me, as is the triune God. A second non-negotiable for me is the authority of Scripture. The person and role of the Holy Spirit who is alive and active in the world is a non-negotiable to me. We are called to live and walk in the Spirit. A fourth non-negotiable is the call to think and act theologically. Life and ministry must be viewed and expressed theologically. God must be at the center as the source of life rather than personality, desire or any other well-intentioned source. The fifth and final non-negotiable for life and ministry is dialogue and relationship, both of which must be a priority for us all. There are probably other non-negotiable items and issues that I am forgetting; however, it seems to me that one of the dangers of non-negotiables is that the list is non-existent, not applied, or far too long.


My own gifting…

I believe in and support a scriptural perspective on the spiritual gifts, where God has given us all gifts that are for our good, the good of the church and the good of the world. The primary spiritual gifts God has given me include discernment, administration, leadership and teaching. Outside of (and because of) the spiritual gifts, there are some gifts in ministry that have been affirmed in me. My strongest gift is equipping people in the use of their gifts, and for ministry, service and leadership in the lives of others and the world. I also believe I am gifted in making disciples through the power of the Holy Spirit and because of those who have poured into my own life. Whether through ministry, networking or leadership, equipping and discipling those inside and outside of the church is an area of passion and gifting that has been a key part of life and ministry. A final key gift in life and ministry comes in my ability to build meaningful relationships with a wide variety of individuals.




The most important passions for ministry…

This area is one that I have rediscovered in the midst of recent reflection. While these passions were never lost, many of them have taken a back seat to the demands of life and ministry. I have a deep passion for the Great Commandment as it is the simple expression of what is most important in life and ministry. It is the love of God, others (which includes the whole world) and the love of self that allows us to fulfill all God has for us and individuals, families, communities and as a people. The mission of God is to bring about the Kingdom of God in the world, and the mission of the church is to make disciples, the charge Jesus left his own disciples and the mission of the church since its inception. I am passionate about the call to discipleship in the gospels that calls all that know Jesus to deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow the Christ. I am passionate about Ephesians 4 as the image of the church and the community of that faith. We are all called to equip the saints for ministry, to use our gifts and to be unified as the people of God, fully mature in our relationship with Jesus Christ.


I am passionate about missional ministry and serving the missional church that truly resembles the movement that was the early church rather that the institution that the church has become. I believe that the role of the church and of all believers is to work with the Holy Spirit to bring about the Kingdom of God in every corner of creation. My passion in ministry is focused on transformation, the radical, Christ-centered change of individuals, families, communities, the church and the world. I am passionate about the work of God and the work of humanity. It is God’s action that calls, saves, redeems, and transforms. Our one action as human beings created in the image of God is to trust. Our relationship with God begins with trust, and our journey of discipleship is marked by trusting God with every aspect of our lives. We were created to be in relationship with God, with others, and with the world.


My personal life verse that has been a source of challenge and encouragement is from Habakkuk 1:5: Look at the nations and watch and be prepared to be amazed, for I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe even if you were told.

Personal Mission Statement: To help others experience transformation through Jesus Christ.



No Comments »