A very big part of missions is going to others with the gospel, but while “gong to them”, there is also a need to “draw them to yourself.” This is best done through weekly ministries the emphasise evangelism, and discipleship.
Finding a proper balance between outreach “or going to them” and ministry “or drawing them to yourself” is difficult. It’s easy to become so focused on ministries or programs that they become an end in themselves. The goal is to get a crowd of people, instead of reaching them with Gods truth.
A ministry focus also emphasises reaching physical or cultural needs above their spiritual ones. I have absolutely no problem meeting the physical needs of those in my community, yet their greatest need is to accept Christ as their Saviour.
At the same time it’s also easy to keep emphasising outreach above ministry because a program takes lots of planning, and hard work. There’s going to be a high risk level with a ministry as well, particularly in the beginning, so that failure is a big possibility.
Recently I realised that I wasn’t doing a very good job of “bringing them to me”, so a new ministry had to be created.
This is mostly because most of my ministries were based in schools or the prison system, both of which have been shut down because of Covid. Some new programs would need to begin even though those ministries will soon open up.
After prayer and some planning, I came up with two ideas:
- A reading help ministry for children
- And a computer tutoring ministry for adults, that teaches basic computer skills
Both of these ministries meet a specific need in the community, and emphasise being with one or two individuals at a time. This gives good opportunities for relationship development and sharing Christ.
the interesting thing is though I knew this needed to be done for a long time, I held off on starting the ministries
The reason for this is the risk and failure level of starting something new frightened me
As I planned the launch on these ministries, this fear had to be faced head-on. The greatest tool that the God gave me in fighting this battle is knowing “failure is not the end of the world.”
Of course nobody likes to fail because it brings shame and humiliation
But those failures are used by God to teach us important lessons, and reveal things we need to work on. That may not be enjoyable in the moment, but the growth that comes as a result is worth it. Our failures also reveal our need for God, and draw us closer to Him.
Taking a step of faith is difficult, but its better to live a life of risk that glories God than to live of life of comfort that dishonors Him.