Need a Restart Button?

When my computer gets sluggish or something isn’t quite right with it, I tend go to the start menu and push ‘Restart’ as a reboot will usually clear out what might be stuck or out of sorts. Even when I’m not sure what the problem might be, I’ve learned not to waste a lot of time trying to figure it out but rather quickly turn to the restart button.

Sometimes we might wish we had a restart button in our lives and ministries. While it may not be as simplistic as pushing a button, the quicker we turn to God, the less time and frustration we’ll waste as God will give us …
God Gives What We Need to Restart

  • the wisdom we need to get on the right path (James 1:5; Prov. 3:5-6),
  • the strength and power we need to make necessary changes (Phil. 4:13),
  • and the grace we need to rise above even in adverse circumstances or with difficult people (2 Cor. 12:9).

Bible Verses for Ministry Focus

Bible Verses about Ministry Focus on God

When we focus on God’s character, heart, and ways, ministry becomes about Him and not us. Reflect on the following Bible verses for a ministry focus that helps make John the Baptist’s words a reality for us when he said about our Lord, “He must increase, but I must decrease” (Jn. 3:30, KJV).

Bible Verses that Put the Focus on God’s Character Rather Than Who We Are

God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill? (Num. 23:19)

I will sing of the LORD’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations. I will declare that your love stands firm forever, that you have established your faithfulness in heaven itself. (Ps. 89:1-2)

Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always. (Ps. 105:4)

Not to us, LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness. (Ps. 115:1)

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD himself, is the Rock eternal. (Isa. 26:3-4)

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. (2 Cor. 10:5)

fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith (Heb. 12:1-2)

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. (James 1:17)

Bible Verses That Point to God’s Heart and Pleasing Him Rather Than Focusing on How We Feel

… God testified concerning him: ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do. (Acts 13:22)

You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise. (Ps. 51:16-17)

His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse, nor his delight in the legs of the warrior; the LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love. (Ps. 147:10-11)

Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea. (Mic. 7:18-19)

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. (1 Jn. 4:7)

Bible Verses Encouraging us to Keep our Ministry Focus on God’s Ways Instead of What We Do

As for God, his way is perfect: The LORD’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him. (Ps. 18:30)

Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. (Ps. 46:10)

Teach me your way, LORD, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. (Ps. 86:11)

Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced, … (Ps. 105:4-5)

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (Prov. 3:5-6)

Evildoers do not understand what is right, but those who seek the LORD understand it fully. (Prov. 28:5)

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (Matt. 6:33)

Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. (Rom. 8:5-7)

so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, (Col. 1:10)

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. (Col. 3:1-2)

Biblical Worship

Essence of Biblical Worship in the Worship Ministry Manual
Article adapted from Worship Ministry Manual. Click to learn more.

 

Paging through the Bible we find some differences in how God instructed His people, Israel, to worship in the Old Testament, and how He instructed the Church, in the New Testament.

Though worship before Christ changed after Christ, the essence of worshiping remained the same, making those realities of worship applicable for us today.

Worship in the Old Testament

For the Israelites, worship centered around God’s presence and glory in the temple with other specific locations prior to the building of the temple (Jn. 4:21). The Israelites worshiped through scheduled and regulated feasts and literal sacrifices (Leviticus).

Though great importance was put on place and method, we still find instances of individual, spontaneous, and varied means of expression.

Worship in the New Testament

For the Church, worship centered around God’s presence at any location, where even two or three gathered (Matt. 18:20) and was to be done in spirit and in truth (Jn. 4:21-24). Worship involved the whole of life and spiritual sacrifices (Rom. 12:1).

Though great importance was put on the heart, we still find instances of meeting in a place and planning for a specific or designated means of expression.

Essence of Biblical Worship Today

While differences existed between the Old and New Testament worship, some truths about worship weave though both Testaments. Certainly these must be truths that take us to the essence of biblical worship and should affect worship through all times.

  • God’s presence could never be contained in a building or place (2 Chron. 2:6; 6:18). Though God met with the Israelites in a set place, the place was not the source of glory. He was and still is the focus no matter where we worship.
  • God’s character never changes (Ps. 102:25-27; Heb. 13:8; James 1:17). We worship the same God. Though the form of worship might change, He doesn’t. He is still totally worthy of all we can offer Him.
  • God’s desire is for a heart response from His people and not mere outward conformity. Jesus quoted from an Old Testament passage when He said, “I desire mercy, not sacrifice” (Matt. 9:13; 12:7; Mic. 6:6-8; Hos. 6:6). Though it may be expressed outwardly, God looks for worship that flows from the inside out.

When we hold to these eternal truths, no matter what the style or location, we can still worship.

Training Begins with Leadership

We ask others to participate ministry training but so often as leaders fail to avail ourselves of sufficient training opportunities. Yet, we too need to keep growing. Whether in our walk with God, or ministries, we need to believe the words of the Apostle Paul about ourselves:

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. (Phil. 3:12)

How can we help others keep growing if we’ve stopped growing? Jesus said, “The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master” (Matt. 10:24). Someone who stops growing soon has little to offer those he/she leads.

Personal Training Needed But Also Training Together as a Leadership Team

While some of our training as leaders will happen on a personal level, some should also be done together with our leadership team. That could include attending a leadership conference together, reading and discussing a book, watching a video presentation, along with other possibilities. It could also include a brief training segment at regular staff or board meetings.

Leadership needs to be on the same page regarding the ultimate purpose and basic philosophy of ministry and how best to implement that approach in their ministries. This takes coming together to learn and grow as a ministry team. When leaders each have their own agendas and don’t come under a broad umbrella, it can be confusing for the remainder of the Body if there’s a discrepancy between what they’re learning and seeing around them.

Training that Begins with Leadership Sets an Example for Others

Success in convincing others of the importance for ministry training will likely increase the more they see a hunger for continued growth in their leaders. Whether attending training events, reading books, or online training, let people see and hear your excitement in learning something new or being reminded of key truths.

  • Request prayer for your leadership team when engaging in training.
  • Take time to share short snippets of what you’ve learned from the pulpit, in staff meetings, on social media, newsletters, or one-on-one with others.
  • Pass on links to online articles, titles of books, etc., prefacing it with how you learned from it and thought it might be helpful to them.

For Leadership to Share Training at Ministry Tools Resource Center

 

If you’ve learned from the Ministry Tools Resource Center, you can pass it on using the tools at this link: Helps for Informing Others

Bottom line: To learn from your example, people need to be aware of what you do. They won’t know if you don’t share it in some way.

For Some Leadership Training:

Leadership Section on MinTools.com
TrainChurchLeaders.com
Additional Resource for Church Leaders

How God Recruits Workers

God's Ways Higher Even How He Recruits Workers

As in anything we do, the best way to recruit is God’s way.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isa. 55:8-9)

Even in recruiting workers, let’s seek to get in alignment with Him.

4 Points to Ponder in How God Recruits Workers

Take some time to read the Scripture referenced with each point for a better understanding of how God recruits workers. The Staffing Ministry Manual briefly expounds on these points and also asks some additional questions to get you thinking more about recruiting God’s way.

  1. God chose to use people to accomplish His work. (Gen. 1:28; Eph. 4:16)
  1. God has empowered people to do His work through the ministry of the Holy Spirit in giving spiritual gifts. (1 Pet. 4:9-11)
  1. God did not sit back and wait for people to volunteer but often went to extraordinary measures to recruit workers. (Ex. 3; Acts 9:3; Matt. 4:18-19, 21; 9:9)
  1. God sees every ministry as important. (Matt. 25:14-30; 1 Cor. 12:21-26)

Will Staffing God’s Way Make a Difference in the Results of our Recruitment Efforts?

If you haven’t been recruiting in alignment with God’s ways and make needed adjustments to your recruitment efforts, you should see a difference in the results. But, remember that not everyone will answer the call. Look at Jesus’ life on earth. Some people were even antagonistic but that didn’t stop Him. He continued to do the work the Father had given Him to do.

We need to likewise be faithful in following God’s ways and leave the results to Him. When we recruit God’s way, we can then use whatever the results might be as a guide for where God wants us to go from there. And, always, let’s heed Jesus’ exhortation to His disciples as He looked over the sea of human need. He said, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field” (Matt. 9:35-38).

For More on Recruitment:

Bible Verses for Ministry Empowerment

Whether in an official position of ministry or during the course of our everyday living as salt and light in this world, we need God’s power to be effective. We must pull on His strength and sustenance, always remembering Jesus’ words in John 15:5. He said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

Bible Verses about our Source of Ministry Empowerment

Bible Verses for Ministry Empowerment - God as Our Source of Power

 

When we consider the following truths about God’s power, it seems rather foolish to rely on our own strength and abilities.

One thing God has spoken, two things I have heard: “Power belongs to you, God, and with you, Lord, is unfailing love”; and, “You reward everyone according to what they have done.” (Ps. 62:11-12)

Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit. (Ps. 147:5)

Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you. (Jer. 32:17)

Jesus replied, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.” (Lk. 18:27)

For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. (Rom. 1:20)

… his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms … (Eph. 1:19-20)

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. (2 Cor. 4:7)

Bible Verses Showing God’s Power Sufficient for All Situations

As we serve we’ll be faced with temptations, weaknesses, and spiritual battles. We may want to give up or compromise. The following verses show us that we can rise above whatever comes our way when we rely on the right Source of power.

The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. (2 Cor. 10:4)

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. (2 Cor. 12:9)

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, (Eph. 3:16)

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. (Eph. 6:10)

being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, (Col. 1:11)

I can do all this through him who gives me strength. (Phil. 4:13)

His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. (2 Pet. 1:3)

Bible Verses Specifically Geared to Empowerment in Ministry

The following verses show the strength, confidence, and grace we can find when we rely on God’s power to teach, preach, witness, or serve in any other capacity.

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses … (Acts 1:8)

My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power. (1 Cor. 2:4-5)

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power. (1 Cor. 4:20)

I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of his power. (Eph. 3:7)

because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. (1 Thess. 1:5)

With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. (2 Thess. 1:11)

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. (2 Tim. 1:7)

If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Pet. 4:11)

Bible Verses Suggesting the Logical Response to God’s Power

When we acknowledge God as the Source of ministry empowerment, finding His power to not only be sufficient but even exceed our needs and expectations, how can we not issue forth in praise and honor to Him?

We will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD, his power, and the wonders he has done. (Ps. 78:4)

Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. (Ps. 150:2)

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Eph. 3:20-21)

If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Pet. 4:11)