Support and Resources For Pastors and
Christian Ministry Professionals
Thomas F. Fischer, M.Div., M.S.A., Editor
| MH Website Overview | Ministry Resources
| MH Archives | MH Dissertations
Some Wrong Reasons To Serve God
Howard Travis, Chmn.
Our Savior Lutheran Church, Midland, MI
- 1. Guilt
- The Lord never intended for guilt to be a motivating factor
in His service.
- Remember the difference between guilt and conviction: Guilt
- Satan and drives you away from God. Conviction comes from
- Spirit's working through the heart of a sinner renewed by
- Sacrament. It draws us towards God.
- 2. Pressure
- "There's no one else to do the job" is the wrong
reason to serve. If we let
- Him, God will provide someone to "fill the gap."
Don't let others pressure
- you into taking a job that doesn't seem right. It may not
be His time. Or
- maybe the vacancy may prove the position is not necessary.
Perhaps the job needs to be intentionally neglected so that others
seeand respondto the need. When such intentional neglect is done in
faithand not as an excuse for side-stepping responsibilitycan be a very
healthy, long term strategy for building an active ministry in which each one
"does his part" joyfully (Eph. 4:16).
- 3. To Please People
- We are all tempted on occasion to please man instead of
God. But Paul wrote in Galatians 1:10, "Am I now trying to win the
approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to
please men, I would not be a servant of Christ."
- It's OK to please
yourself in knowing that you gave God your very best in carrying out your ministry for
Him. But working to please other people is always the wrong reason.
Beware of the signs of people-pleasing such as using title
or position to get one's way, pre-occupation with statistics, being afraid
to appropriately confront, working more than stated in the
call, lack of self-differentiation, passive-aggressiveness, being
overly-direct, self-driven pushiness, worldly expectations, et al.
- An ego "in check" can give you a great deal of
positive drive and
- motivation. An ego out of control is guaranteed to cause
- relationships and congregational health. Don't volunteer
for ministry in
- positions of power and prestige if you know that pride is
an issue for you.
- Volunteer for an area of pure service until your heart
finds joy in the
- simplicity of service just for Jesus' sake.
- Ego Check: If you find it below
you to clean the toilets in the church's
- bathrooms, because of your "position" in the
church, resign your position
- and pray for a servant's heart. Seek a position in the
church that has no
- 5. To Earn Salvation
- There is nothingnothingyou can do to earn your
salvation. It is of grace, not works. Period! (Ephesians 2:8-10).
"Therefore, my dear brothers, stand
firm. Let nothing [including people-pleasing] move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the
Lord [and no one else],
because you know that [it is only] your labor in the Lord [that] is not in vain." I
Corinthians 15:58 (NIV)
Thomas F. Fischer
*Inspired by Dan Reiland's book, Shoulder to
Shoulder (expanded by Thomas Fischer)
Note: If you haven't read Dan
Reiland's, Shoulder to
Shoulder: Strengthening Your Church By Supporting Your Pastor, (Nashville: Thomas
Nelson Publishers, 1997), be sure to do so. It's a great resource for building a healthy
foundation for pastoral ministry in a congregational setting. I like some of the chapter
headings such as "Championing Your Pastor's Humanity" (yes, we do make mistakes)
and "Ten Keys To Connecting With Your Pastor."
Index Articles 1-49
Articles 50-99 Articles
100-149 Articles 150-199
200-249 Articles 250-299
Articles 300-349 Articles
Copyright © 1997-2004 Ministry
Health, LLC All Rights Reserved.
FrontPage and Microsoft Internet Explorer are registered trademarks of
Adobe Acrobat and PDF are registered trademarks of Adobe Systems
Hosted and Developed by SAMSA
was revised on:
Tuesday, October 05, 2004 11:03:28 PM