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Spiritual Director’s Message for September

August 29, 2009

Friends of Chrysalis and Emmaus,

Who is to do the work of ministry??

The Church of course. Who else? Many churches, however, seem to think the pastor, the staff, or the council ought to do it.

But consider the example of the early church (Acts 6:1-7). The Church chose seven when a ministry arose. They did not appoint a Food Distribution Task Force Committee. The members are to do the work of (Ministry) in the Church (Ephesians 4:11-12). Pastors are to equip the laity to perform ministries to which they are called. Two things we need to understand.

  1. Lay people are legitimate ministers and every lay person is a minister.
  2. The typical church has about 25% of its members involved in ministry. Congregations not only need more members: THEY NEED MORE MINISTERS.

First, we in Emmaus need LIFT PEOPLE UP (ENCOURAGEMENT).

God has given every Christian at least one Spiritual Gift (Ephesians 4:11). Our ultimate purpose is to glorify God and exalt Christ and to lift up His people. (Ephesians 4:12-13).

Second, LOOK PEOPLE OVER (LAY EMPOWERMENT).

Identify peoples gifts and abilites. People need three things: A challenge of Servanthood, A Change of Heart and A Choice to follow God’s Will for their lives.

Third, LET PEOPLE IN (ENROLLMENT)

Each person has time and abilities. Those who are being enlisted need to know three things.

  1. PHILOSOPHY (Who they are)
  2. PURPOSE (Where they are going)
  3. and PROCESS (How they will get there).

Fourth, LINE UP PEOPLE (EQUIPPING)

This is training. Get your friends on a walk. Let’s fill The Fall Mens and Womens Walk. Be a good Sponsor.

Finally, LET PEOPLE OUT (IMPLEMENTATION)

This is about real ministry. The greatness of a church is not measured by how many come into a church but HOW MANY GO OUT IN MINISTRY. We GATHER to learn about God’s love and we SCATTER to share God’s love with our neighbour. The church must reach OUTSIDE THE WALLS to reach people who need the Lord. The effectiveness of our church depends on the number of people who are involved in meaningful Ministry.

Decolores,
Bishop Jim Sunderland, Community Spiritual Director
Keystone Emmaus Community
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