Hi, my name is Michelle Anthony. Welcome to family ministry conversations. Today’s topic is about the community of ministry support.
When I think about this, I get sad thinking about some of my younger years in ministry … and how I was doing ministry alone.
I don’t know if some of you feel exactly the same way right now, thinking if you were to stop today your ministry would fall apart because you are doing it all by yourself.
The work of ministry can be tiring. It can be lonely, it can be isolating, but that was never what God intended. He wanted us to be together.
Ministering in Community
The “We” in Scripture is profound. It’s about the body of Christ going after each generation.
Now, each generation has the commission to pass on the gospel to the following generation so that they’ll be able to pass it on to the next generation in their absence.
It was never supposed to be one person doing all the work. In fact, Ephesians 4 says that our job as ministry leaders is to equip the saints to do the work of the Lord.
Ministry was never supposed to be done in a vacuum. It’s not top-down, senior pastor, children’s pastor, youth pastor, it’s all of us as a community doing the ministry together. And we’re supposed to support one another.
My Early Years of Ministry
I think back to some of my earlier years in ministry when the only people I knew who were in ministry were the people in my own church. Maybe my mom, my spouse, or my kids who I’d recruited to work in the ministry. Those were really the only people that I knew in ministry.
I coveted working alongside other churches and ministry denominations. Perhaps different demographics, different cities, states, or even countries where I could glean from what God was doing through His Spirit all over the world.
When those days of ministry loneliness occurred, it would have been nice to have someone to make that phone call to or to get an encouraging text from.
A New Perspective on Ministry Support
Today, my paradigm of ministry support is completely different. There are literally hundreds of people who I could call upon to pray for me, to walk through a trial with me, or simply ask, “Wait, how do you do a parent orientation?” or “What did you do for your student ministry retreat this year? How do you do baptisms or child dedications?”
From this support network I get ideas for anything from decorating a room to empowering leaders. These are the kinds of support other ministry leaders provide so we aren’t isolated.
My encouragement to you is to look for those places that are both online or available throughout conferences and networks so that you’re not doing this thing called “Ministry” alone.
Not only will you be better equipped to do your role, but your ministry will flourish because you’re getting ideas that are not just isolated to your one context of ministry. Don’t do this thing alone—God never intended you to do so.