I’ve been spending some time lately reflecting on my ministry and the coming season. As my role has continued to change and our church has continued to grow, the pressures have changed and my time is increasingly spoken for. In addition, it seems like there is always a person or a task that needs immediate attention.
The ministry of Jesus and Paul have been speaking wisdom to me lately in the difference between discipleship and ministry. Although both men spent copious amounts of time ministering to both the masses and individuals alike, they never departed from a focused investment in a small group of men. I am noticing in myself the ease with which I get lost in ministry–the crowds crowd out my discipleship.
The conclusion for me has been, at bare minimum, I need to be investing in a small group of people on a weekly basis, and inviting those individuals more frequently into my life and ministry. The commitment to discipling a group, and not simply leading several ministries, provides for me accountability, as well as a continued perspective to the challenges our body faces in pursuing the vision God has given us.
God’s word to me has been this: don’t let ministry replace discipleship–it’s the road to failure.