Monday, 28 April 2008

Sweet Success - Review of Liberating

The second part of Liberating concludes with a chapter on sweet success. Essentially they tell the story of a small, average church service. But a church service which they view through the lens of success as has been so far set out. They were being successful in ministry because they were seeking to be faithful, to serve, to love, to believe, to pray, to strive for holiness, and to be positive and encouraging. There is a great deal of freedom in this, as is evident from their recounting of the story. The thing which struck me, however, was the way in which they now reflect on the ‘success’ which they had so longed after earlier in their ministry. When the numbers, the recognition and so on came, it wasn’t really all that important. How liberating!

The section concludes with a series of questions:

  1. Are you proving faithful in the exercise of your ministry? Specifically, are you obedient to Gods’ Word?
  2. Are you living your life as a servant, or have you drifted from Servanthood into self-service?
  3. Do you love Jesus?
  4. Do we believe that God’s Son is creator […] sustainer […] goal […] and lover of our souls?
  5. Are you a person of prayer? Do you regularly take significant portions of time for an exposure to God, to bare your needs and the needs of your people to God?
  6. Are you growing in holiness?
  7. What is your basic attitude towards your ministry (and your colleagues)?

1 comment:

Dave said...

I really like that last question that they ask. I remember Paul Barnett gave us an A4 sheet in chaplaincy group that was his thoughts on Parish Pastoral Ministry. The thing he emphasised over and over again (and yes, it was dry but good stuff!) was that your attitude is of fundamental importance. 'Attitude is critical and directs everything else - teachability, serant-minded, Christian qualities (patience). Excellence in ministry is your own godliness.' The other stress was about how you come across, are you seen as a 'set things right' type of guy? Or a 'look at me' type of guy? Or as a 'servant, someone who is teachable'?