If we were to ask the question “What is the most important characteristic in an effective ministry worker?”, we might hear a variety of responses. Possible suggestions could be:
Intentional: You need to know your purpose and make deliberate efforts to follow the process for getting there. Intentionality is important because people need to believe that where you are going will make a difference in their lives.
Honest: You need to be authentic, transparent, real. Honesty is important because people need to sense that they can trust you.
Consistent: You need to practice what you preach, always be fair, and bring some sense of stability into this chaotic world. Consistency is important because people need to know that they can count on you.
Sensitive: You need to understand and accept that not everybody is at the same place in their walk nor do they have the same needs. Sensitivity is important because people need to feel that they matter to you.
Loving: You need to give of yourself to others in ways let them see how devoted you are to them which would include all of the above traits and more. Love is important because people need to know you truly care about them.
Notice that the importance of these characteristics is not merely to make us more effective or make us look good to others. Rather, it’s the effect we have on the people we serve, … the message these traits relay to the people we serve. If we are not connecting with people, all our smooth-running programs or eloquent words will lack the full impact they could have.
If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. (1 Cor. 13:1-3)