A Sign of a Successful Church

03 Jun

God placed leaders in the church for the purpose of preparing and equipping disciples of Jesus to be engaged in the work of the ministry:

Ephesians 4:11-12 (ESV)
11  And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers,
12  to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ..

God does not intend for leaders in his church to be involved in everything that the local church does. Too many preachers, elders and deacons (and their wives) become burned out in doing the work of the kingdom because they try to be involved in everything.

God’s design is for leaders in the church to oversee, supervise, delegate, and equip disciples in the congregation to be involved in works of ministry that are specifically matched to their individual talents and abilities.

 Unfortunately, some members of the church think that the leaders should be involved in everything. This unreasonable expectation is communicated by looks, verbal jabs, and even masked in jokes. Sometimes this makes leaders feel guilty and so they overload their schedules in the church’s work to the detriment of their marriages, families, and personal relationship with God.

The unrealistic expectations placed upon leaders in the church can be the murder weapon unwittingly used by members that kills the spirituality of their leaders.

Based upon Paul’s teaching in Ephesians, I am convinced that a sign of a successful church is when its leaders are not personally involved in every activity and work of the local church.

The apostles realized this when they wisely delegated the responsibility of helping widows to other men so that the study and teaching of God’s word would not be neglected:

Acts 6:1-4 (ESV)
1  Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution.
2  And the twelve summoned the full number of the disciples and said, “It is not right that we should give up preaching the word of God to serve tables.
3  Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty.
4  But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”

Elders are responsible for overseeing the ministries of the local church, but they should not be personally involved in all of them.

Preachers should encourage and equip members for involvement in ministry, but they should not be involved in all these works.

Deacons should not be involved in all the works in the church, but they should focus on their specific assigned tasks given them by the elders. By the way, this goes for their wives also.

God purposely gave you the abilities and talents that you possess for the purpose of advancing His kingdom. Every person has different abilities and God means for us to find what we do best and focus on that.

Remember the teaching of Paul in Romans 12:4-8 (ESV): 
4  For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function,
5  so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.
6  Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith;
7  if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching;
8  the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.

Too many of us try to be involved in everything in the church, we become burned out, and then we are involved in nothing. This is extremely unwise. Find what you do best and make it your ministry in the church.

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Posted by on June 3, 2016 in Church


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