A Metric for Church Leaders/Evaluating our Ministries


Devotional Thought of the Day

22 “And now I am bound by the Spirit* to go to Jerusalem. I don’t know what awaits me, 23 except that the Holy Spirit tells me in city after city that jail and suffering lie ahead. 24 But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God. 25 “And now I know that none of you to whom I have preached the Kingdom will ever see me again. 26 I declare today that I have been faithful. If anyone suffers eternal death, it’s not my fault,* 27 for I didn’t shrink from declaring all that God wants you to know.  28 “So guard yourselves and God’s people. Feed and shepherd God’s flock—his church, purchased with his own blood*—over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you as elders.  Acts 20:22–28  NLT

10 9. We must learn about Christ from the Holy Gospel alone, which clearly testifies that “God has consigned all men to disobedience, that he may have mercy upon all” (Rom. 11:32), and that he does not want anyone to perish (Ezek. 33:11; 18:23), but that everyone should repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (1 Tim. 2:6; 1 John 2:2).

As most pastors do, I regularly get letters and packets, the “best advice” that I will ever hear.  Or invitations to pastors conferences guaranteed to change my ministry.I have to wonder if they share the standard of the apostle Paul, as he writes,

..my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.

and

I declare today that I have been faithful. If anyone suffers eternal death, it’s not my fault,

When churches are tasked with evaluating their ministries, there is some metric, some measuring standard that is to be used.  The end result of that standard is a mission statement, and a core list of values, and a general direction for the ministries of a church.  Consultants and coaches are often the givers of guidance, as our national and even international leaders.

But I wonder if these words from Paul, as he seems to realize his days of ministry are coming to a close part of the consideration of whether a pastor,  a teacher, an elder, a parish or even an entire denomination can be content with their work?

Go back through the readings above, hear the Lord asking you if you measure up to these standards.

You may think I am going to give my super secret way of getting to that level of maturity, my 6 plans or some cute five letter acronym to remember to motivate you to do God’s work.  I don’t.

My advice?

Spend more time in God’s presence. Receive the Lord’s Supper more, contemplate the cross and your baptism more. Spend time being relieved of your sin, confessing and being absolved of it Find ways to know and revel in this simple truth.

The Lord is With You.

It is from there, from knowing God’s heart because His love has been shown to you – that is where the desire for ministry comes from, that is from where the dunamis  power and ability comes.  If you want you church to be able to follow Paul’s  guidance, do the same. Feed them the word and sacraments that confirm the covenant, the declaration that they are His people.

Be sure that the Holy Spirit will work through you, and open your hearts and hands to do so.

And rejoice, for they will reach the measure of the fulness of Christ… for that is why you were called. And know this, He won’t abandon you forsake you – for that too is a promise.

AMEN!

Tappert, T. G. (Ed.). (1959). The Book of Concord the confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. (p. 495). Philadelphia: Mühlenberg Press.

About justifiedandsinner

I am a pastor of a Concordia Lutheran Church in Cerritos, California, where we rejoice in God's saving us from our sin, and the unrighteousness of the world. It is all about His work, the gift of salvation given to all who trust in Jesus Christ, and what He has done that is revealed in Scripture. God deserves all the glory, honor and praise, for He has rescued and redeemed His people.

Posted on September 17, 2015, in Devotions and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Good words, Dustin! Thanks for being up front about all this.

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