Can I tell you that I hate the folktale of “The Little Red Hen”? I remember it from my childhood, and I remember coming across it in little storybooks when my kids were little, and I always skipped it. I just don’t like it. I know the morals it hopes to teach are good ones (against laziness, for work and for cooperation), but the climactic delivery actually teaches a very unChristlike selfishness. It’s sort of a “one bad turn deserves another”-type thing.
Admit it. You do not have enough time or energy to do everything that is expected of you. I’m in that same leaky boat. The good news is that we are not supposed to. Although our gifts and calling are irrevocable, they don’t make us invincible.
What if we refused to be the solution to every problem in our church? Imagine defining ministry success by how our members’ succeed instead of how we succeed? Our call to equip people for ministry is a call to give plates away, not spin them better.
I loved being able to be a part of sharing Lindsey’s story.
This is a great older post from Jamaal Williams:
Pastors, we need to be reminded that our ministry is a big deal to Satan and a lot is at stake. He is just as tuned into your sermons, schedule, fears, failure, and future as your wife is! Only Satan’s interest isn’t to cuddle with you, but rather to kill you (John 10:10). This discouragement and attempted murder do not happen all at once or in some dramatic spiritual showdown. It happens in small increments. As Paul David Tripp pointed out in his work, Age of Opportunity, “Spiritual warfare makes us think of demon possession, horrific demonstrations of satanic control, and dramatic exorcisms. But Scripture presents spiritual warfare not as the violent, bizarre end of the Christian life, but as what the Christian life is!”
This is terrific.
I planted a church less than five years ago. I still call it a church plant. We’re holding regular meetings, but we are only now forming our first membership, and I’m the only elder on site so far. Our internal giving is growing, but we still rely on external support. I’d do it differently if I started again, but I still consider ourselves a church plant.
A favorite from the archives:
I came home yesterday and found my daughters reading on the couch (which is every dad’s dream). Hannah was reading a graphic novel about a girl and a unicorn. Abigail had a copy of the first Nancy Drew book.
“How is it?” I asked. Normally, she says something like “It’s pretty good,” or “I like it.” This time, though, was different. She looked up at me, with a great big grin, and said, “It’s gripping!”