I have long looked at Ephesians 4:16 as God’s blueprint for church growth and ministry. As I wrote before, I believe this One Verse Says It All.
From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
Notice that growth happens “as each part does its work.” The part we have is tied into our spiritual gifts as seen in the context of Ephesians 4:16.
In looking at the phrase “as each part does its work” elsewhere I wrote,
The word “as” denotes the measuring rod to which we will see this kind of growth and edification in the Body. Growth will be in proportion to “as each part does its work.
In today’s world, people are so busy. They are often stressed out. Getting busy, stressed out people involved, doing their part, can be a challenge so we must ask if God’s blueprint is still relevant.
In today’s world, people are increasingly becoming disillusioned with the church. Really, it seems to be the institutionalized church with which people have a problem but disillusioned people tend to have difficulty distinguishing between the organized church and the organism that is the church. How do you get disillusioned people involved, doing their part? Is God’s blueprint still relevant?
What today’s people do or believe is not what makes truth relevant. The Word of God is as life-oriented and powerful today as it was years ago. Certainly an omniscient God knew what the people would be like today when is laid out His blueprint for church growth and ministry.
I believe it is going to take a renewed passion in pastors and ministry leaders to take God’s Word about this so seriously that they are willing to stay the course regardless of the obstacles and setbacks that grow out of the problem. If pastors and ministry leaders feel God’s blueprint is no longer relevant, they will have little motivation to put their all into meeting people where they are. If you don’t meet people where they are, you are going to have a difficult time taking them to where they should be.
Teaching about God’s design, using a curriculum like Everybody Has a Part, is only a starting point. This emphasis needs to become part your church’s culture and that takes persistence.
Getting everybody on board takes time. Sometimes you must first disciple people, one person at a time. Going through this process takes persistence.
People are at different places in this process so we need to take an individualized approach to meeting people’s needs and spurring them on to doing their parts.
And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. (1 Thess. 5:14)