Today I want to share with you a teaching I did for 12Church ministry on the whole issue of pain while we’re engaged in ministry. How do we continue in ministry when we’re experiencing pain? How do we carry on in ministry when surrounded and immersed in pain, especially working with people in pain? How do we do that?
Here are some thoughts: Can we engage on mission with Jesus when we’re in deep pain?
Today I’m sharing with you content I made recently for 12Church, which is the new venture alternative church model we’re a part of. This training really is about the five commitments that are actually required to be an effective disciple maker. It’s based on the learnings from our past year of more focused disciple making, and some of these things will be principle based and fairly obvious. Others are gonna be a little bit more tactical, practical focused, and you might be surprised in particular at one of them which is a very specific methodology that is showing up around the world in disciple making movement.
This past year has been a huge learning curve in many ways, unlearning things I’ve learned after decades of ministry and decades of being a Christian and inputting some new information, ideas and convictions that will help us be makers of disciples. So today here are the five simple trajectory, changing commitments that are required if we’re going to be disciple makers.
I was just looking at some of the data from a couple different Barna surveys of pastors from last year and where they’re at in relation to their ministry. They asked the question, have you given real serious consideration to quitting being in full-time ministry within the last year in January of 2021 and 29% said yes. Then by October 38% were saying yes. And of those under the age of 45, 46% of them were saying yes.
The way the question is worded, it’s not saying have you felt like quitting some days, which I think all of us do no matter what our job is, but the question was real serious consideration to quitting being in full-time history. That’s really quite significant. They’re actually looking for a way to leave ministry.
The question is why is that? Why do you think it is? I know in my world, anecdotally, as we’re seeing pastors leaving churches, most of the pastors I’m seeing leaving a ministry are also leaving the ministry, at least the vocational pastoral ministry.
For a few days last week my phone was driving me crazy. It would be good most of the day and then every evening it froze up on me. I could reboot it and it would work for a couple minutes, then it would freeze. I couldn’t figure out what was going on and it was driving me bonkers.
Finally, I did what you’re really supposed to do and I started playing with apps and looking at which apps were on, trying to turn some on and some off. At one point I got a notification from the nightlight app that it was having an issue. That was the clue because it was the blue light filter that I had set to come on at nine o’clock in the evening, and I realized that’s when my phone was seizing up.
I made two decisions this morning right at the start of my day that are going to save me four hours a week, as a conservative average, for the rest of the year. To me that’s just amazing. When I figured out what those two decisions were going to do in my life, the decisions actually became a little bit easier.
Now, the first decision I made was about the YouTube video I’ve been producing once a week for our 12Church. It’s a foundational bit of teaching and leadership level stuff, which I think are important. We’ve got some good and very important videos out there talking about discipleship versus disciple making, and some of those basic disciple making principles. It takes me about about four hours a week to do that.