The Lord has laid on our staff’s heart to start a ministry tips and tools blog. It is our goal to publish two per month via email and video. We will keep the teaching between five and eight minutes. We will start with some basic teaching but would welcome suggestions of a subject or subjects you would find of interest. As part of the teaching, the staff will review the monthly reports to see if there are common issues that we may teach on. After you read or listen to the teaching, we would gladly welcome suggestions, observations, and feedback from you. We all must continue to learn so we are more than willing to receive information that will benefit us all.
Our Goal at TMCI is to help you fulfill the call that God has on your life. We pray that these tips, tools and teachings will help you as you carry out your ministry.
To start I would like talk about Effective ministry. My definition of Effective ministry is ministry that changes lives for Jesus Christ. If you have a large group attending a meeting and it is not changing lives for Jesus Christ, you need to either change the format or stop it. We have to remember we are not a social club. We must be making disciples for Jesus Christ and not just entertaining people. Too many churches are entertainment centers instead of training centers. One of our future teachings will address making disciples.
The start of any effective ministry is prayer. Your success in ministry is directly related to the amount of prayer you put into it. Oswald Chambers: “People pray for a greater work; prayer is the greater work.” Nothing is won in the physical realm, until it is won in the spiritual realm.
First, you must have an effective prayer life. Many Christians have a devotional life in which they read a devotional that inspires them spiritually and then they pray for a prayer list of people and events. This is a good thing, but God wants more for you, especially for those in leadership. He wants quiet time with you so that you can listen for and hear his voice for the day’s events.
I have learned that just doing a devotional reading does not build a relationship with Christ. Ginny and I used to own a Christian book store. We sold many copies of a devotional called Five Minutes with God .There was even one called One Minute with God. One to five minutes a day is not sufficient to build a relationship with God. When Jesus was on earth, He asked his disciples to spend one hour in prayer with him
I am reminded of Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. NKJV.
This scripture reminds me of two things. One: Christ wants a relationship with us. He keeps knocking. The second: we must open the door and let him in to build that relationship. There is a difference between eating and dining. Dining means to linger, to take one’s time, to enjoy the event. That’s what Christ wants to do with us. He does not want to go through a MacDonald’s drive-through with us. As Judy Covington said “He wants to spend quality white tablecloth time with us.”
Christ is ready to meet you where you are! Do not try to copy another’s believer’s relationship with Him. You are unique and God knows best how to communicate with you. Some believers get spiritually frustrated because they are following someone else’s formula. Be real with him!
I also discovered that an experience with God is not the same as building a relationship with the Almighty. God has used me in many spiritual gifts just as He has used you. It is great to be used by God in those circumstances. But some are gift seekers and not relationship seekers. We must stop seeking the gifts and concentrate of seeking the giver. As we spend quiet time with him and go deeper into Him, we will receive new and deeper revelation.
Christ is not talking about a little prayer time; he is talking about relationship building time. Time for praise and worship, time to listen, time to get revelation. Prayer can easily become a religious activity, and not a relationship building activity. Our ears can shut out the voice of God when we are doing our religious activity. In today’s world, we need new revelation every day for guidance.
Another important thing in starting a ministry is to get people committed to pray for you. Intercessory prayer warriors and prayer partners are essential in effective ministries. You need people who will watch your back in prayer. My wife, Ginny, and I always have a prayer team around to protect as we travel and do ministry.
When God called us to help Sister Judy Covington run TMCI, the first email I sent out was to ask for those who would pray for us. I received twelve responses from people who committed to pray for us. Now we have over one hundred prayer warriors praying each week for us and the prayer requests we receive from you on your monthly reports.
I encourage you to get a scripture to pray for yourself and your ministry. Every day during our Morning Prayer time at the office I pray the Prayer of Jabez: 1 Chron 4:10
And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, “Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!” So God granted him what he requested. NKJV
We ask God to bless us and increase our territory for Him and that He will be with us because without His presence and guidance our lives and ministries will be fruitless. We pray that we will be a blessing to our people. God has always honored His word and He still is increasing his territory through TMCI ministries like yours.
Bishop Bob Coulter
Ablaze for God by Wesley L. Duewel
Dinning at the Master’s Table by Paul D. Norcross