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Church ministry is a team sport. While it is tempting at times to do everything ourselves the truth is we can’t. And we shouldn’t. The church works best when we all work together.
Last night was our monthly Elders’ meeting. We talked a little longer than planned but it was a good meeting. I got to thinking about it and realized that for the last 15 years or more I have attended at least one such meeting a month. Sometimes there are two or three such meetings a month. Whether they are called elders, deacons, trustees or ministry leaders - the local church just wouldn’t carry out its mandate without these dedicated individuals.
During the years of wandering in the wilderness Moses made many complaints to God. More than once he complained about the heavy burden of leading people and that he was all alone in his job. God heard those cries and answered in a number of different ways. He provided for 70 new leaders to come and assist in spiritual matters. God told Moses “I will take some of the Spirit that is on you and put it on them, and they shall bear the burden of the people with you, so that you may not bear it yourself alone” (Numbers 11:17)
In Exodus 18 Moses’ father-in-law was used to help develop a plan for the delegation of judging disputes among the people. These things helped Moses but I am sure it also enriched the quality of ministry and decision making among the people. It is clear from these accounts that even a gifted man like Moses needed to be part of a larger group devoted to leading.
When Jesus began his earthly ministry the first thing he did was choose his twelve disciples. These men shared life with Jesus during a three year period and then stepped into significant leadership roles after the resurrection and ascension. Then they also choose people to work with. We often look at amazing leaders in Scripture (Moses, David, Jesus, or Paul) but then overlook that they were surrounded by others who helped do the ministry.
Team ministry or team leadership is not a foreign concept in the Bible. God’s plan is for men and women to work together in the kingdom. Now in this church age we continue to be blessed with godly and talented individuals who serve and carry out the ministry. Any church that becomes a one-man show is in great trouble. That’s not how things were designed to be.
I am grateful for the many people I have worked with over the years. Serving in a leadership position in a local church can be a difficult task. The people I have worked with have been marked by great humility. They run the risk of being misunderstood since once you are in leadership people question your motives and means. But for me the greatest joy is working together and serving together. I have the wonderful opportunity of sharing life with so many fantastic people. I know that it is God who calls us and places us accordingly in the body. (1 Corinthians 12)
I hope you are thankful for the leadership God has provided within the local church. Please remember to keep those individuals in your prayers and encourage them with your words. If you are a leader, remember that we all work together. No one has all the gifts but we bring what we have and God makes it all beautiful.

One Response to “Ministry is a Team Sport”

  1. on 11 Jun 2011 at 11:00 amChris

    Thanks for posting your notes regularly. The nuggets hidden within each of them are encouraging. Some are quite obvious while others kind of sneak up on you. While your banner still says you’re in Azerbaijan, I’m thankful you haven’t waited until you update everything on your website to get back to sharing God’s truth for your readers. May God continue to bless you and use you in His mighty ways.

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