The Motivation Behind Your Ministry

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"I don't want to gain the whole world and lose my soul," sang Toby Mac, Kirk Franklin and Mandisa from my boom box as I spent a week in the basement de-cluttering. His rap's lyrics are a call to Christ followers to stay faithfully focused in our culture's temptation to slowly defect. But goofy me, I had misheard the lyrics as, "I don't want to change the whole world and lose my soul." I perked up. My auditory failure turned out to be one more "ah-ha" in my recently awakened desire toward ministry leadership wholeness.

I tend toward being a 24/7 idea machine. I often feel desperate to connect others to church/world injustices. And I sort of half believe the phrase, "I am fairly certain that given a cape and a nice tiara I could save the world" (from curlygirldesign.com). But my tendencies were causing dis-ease, boundary-less focus and acid-reflux. And I painfully discovered my successes were feeding the needy areas of my heart.

Paula D'Arcy's months-long illness led her to ponder her successful speaking and writing ministry in Gift of the Red Bird, "I made a lot of assumptions. All the events, invitations and coincidences catapulted me onto certain roads, and I went along with them. It was Christian ministry, so of course it was good. I never asked the question, but is it right for me? Is it right at this time? Right at this pace? It never occurred to me that simply because a deed or mission was good in nature, and because it was put before me, it didn't necessarily mean that I was the one to fulfill it, even if I had the talents to do so."

Consider questioning the motivations behind your ministry work and pace, any neediness that might drive your desire for success and begin to risk asking God "What next?"

September11, 2009 at 8:41 PM

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