Who God is and what He says in His Word remain true and dependable throughout the ages. We would like to think we would never compromise the unchanging message but ever so subtly, if we aren’t careful, we might start doing that which shifts our focus and priorities off of God and His Word and onto our methodology.
When Our Methodology Becomes a Problem
If we start relying on methodology more than on God, our means for doing ministry is already compromised and it’s only a matter of time until the message isn’t as important.
Solution to this Problem: Bring every aspect of what we do before the Lord in prayer. — “Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” (Prov. 16:3) “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)
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If we use methodology to impress people about how wonderful we are rather than point them to the Lord, our motivation for ministry is already compromised and soon the message will be lost as well.
Solution to this Problem: We need to work purposefully and diligently to keep God as the focal point in every aspect of what we do. — “Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” (1 Tim. 4:16) “… in every way they will make the teaching about God our Savior attractive” (Titus 2:10)
How Ministry Methodology Problems Subtly Begin
These problems can come on subtly. We might start out well, using the right means and with the right motivation, but over time lose perspective about our methodology versus the message. We begin to simply “do” without first praying and seeking God’s direction. Soon, we no longer think about whether or not we’re doing it in Jesus’ name, to the glory of God, as accountable first and foremost to Him. We and our methodology take center stage, superseding the message. Focus no longer gets put on God but on what we do. And, sadly, we think we’re doing well.
Let’s guard our hearts and minds so we never let the methods we use overtake the message, or should we say the Person, we proclaim.