Last week we talked about building the framework, or more aptly, the foundation for your ministry. We began (or continued) working through the questions that every ministry leader should ask as they begin the process of deciding how their ministry should function in the world.
The theological foundation upon which you build is extremely important to defining your over all goals and mission on the field. It has been a lengthy and prayerful process for me to work through taking the better part of a month and lots of wise counsel and prayer from my spiritual mentors. Take time to nail this first part down, before moving on,
Once you’ve determined the scriptural basis for your ministry, it’s time to begin building the grid work which will become the filter through which all opportunities and ideas should pass when making decisions: the philosophy. Jeremy Pace of Resurgence likens these to the walls of a home.
You begin with the load-bearing walls. These are immovable, unchangeable within the structure (else the structure falls down). They are the primary grid which make up the shape and form of a home. Ask yourself the question:
•What are the non-negotiable, prescribed truths of Scripture that set the boundaries?
The next step is to begin constructing the interior walls. These determine what you are and are not about. Ask yourself these questions:
•What biblical imperatives and indicatives does your church/ministry/organization need to explicitly articulate because they are overlooked?
•What biblical imperatives and indicatives does your church/ministry/organization practice faithfully (almost without thinking)?
•What biblical imperatives and indicatives does the culture and context of your church ignore or fight against? These you will want to make more explicit.
•What biblical imperatives and indicatives are paralleled within your culture and context but need to be connected? (These too you will want to make more explicit.)
These questions will begin to define the type of culture your ministry will subscribe to and thus become the filter for everything that you do.
So I am on to building these walls. I said this before, but I think it bears repeating, this has not been a speedy process for me- although I must admit I thought I had already done most of this work. What I have found is that as I dig, God opens up questions in my heart. He opens up visions of something more in places and less in others and is awakening me to a renewed sense of purpose through my ministry. I hope and pray that as you work through these questions with me, he does the same for you as well.