Reprinted from Baptist Voice, Part 2
Philippians 4:19 – Missions! “If we take care of God’s business He will take care of our business.” God blesses a church that is committed to the Great Commission. We began supporting missionaries before we even chartered the church. God has honored His promise to meet the needs of a missionary supporting church.
Acts 4:31 – Prayer! “And when they prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.” Beginning a prayer partner program was one of the best decisions I ever made as a pastor. Men and women commit to praying with a prayer partner for one year. Upon inaugurating this ministry, God blessed us with three consecutive years of either someone being saved, baptized or joining the church every Sunday. All to God’s Glory! He seemed to be placing His stamp of approval on a ministry bathed in prayer.
Matthew 6:33 – Holiness! God First! Early in ministry I was challenged by the “Resolutions of Jonathan Edwards.” As a 19 year old man, Edwards wrote down the resolutions to order his life. As a result, God used him to spark the Great Awakening, prepare the colonies to establish a government based on Biblical principles, and change the world. With that inspiration, I wrote down 31 personal life goals and principles to live by. You can jot down your own list.
Give glory to God by maintaining a daily walk with Christ, Matt. 6:33
Surrender my will to Christ and desire His likeness, Rm. 8:29, 12:1-2
Love my wife as Christ loved the church, Eph. 5:25
Raise my children to love God, Eph. 6:1-2; 3 John 4
Serve the Lord with excellence in our church family, Col. 3:23, I Tim. 1:12
Honor my parents, Eph. 6:2
Share my faith with the unsaved, Acts 1:8
Live with Integrity, I Thess. 2:3-10
Regularly commit Scripture to memory, II Tim. 2:15, Psalm 119:11
Keep my testimony above reproach (Be a Daniel), Dan. 6:3-4
Be a godly influence on my Christian friends, Jms. 2:8; Gal. 6:2
Be honest, Phil. 1:10
Be pure, I Thess. 4:3
Choose a positive and joyful attitude, Gal. 5:22-23; Phi. 4:4
Be loyal to my church family, Heb. 13:17
Commit to excellence, Col. 3:23
Trust God daily, Prov. 3:5-6
Tithe on all my income, Prov. 3:9-10
Manage my time well, Eph. 5:16
Develop personal discipline, I Cor. 9:24-27; Gal. 2:20
Be a leader (be an example), I Tim. 4:6,16
Serve others, Gal. 5:13
Maintain excellent health, I Tim. 4:8
Have regular family devotions, Deut. 6:4-7
Have regular family activities, Eph. 6:4
Read ½ hour a day for additional study, II Tim. 4:13
Be kind and forgiving, Eph. 4:32
Develop concentration of power, Col. 3:23
Develop orderliness, Prov. 24:30-31
Increase my giving to God yearly, II Cor. 9:6-8
Control family spending and live by a budget, Prov. 23:4-5
Ephesians 5:16-17 – Balance! Effective and Spirit-filled ministry needs constant attention and care. More time with the family; more time in counseling; more time in soulwinning. Without balance in life, you will fall and fail. If you lose your wife and children, you lose your ministry. Satan is very effective at removing men from the ministry. Some “foul out,” some “rust out,” and others “burn out.” There is one thing they all have in common – They are OUT!
Nehemiah 6:3 – Focus! “I am doing a great work for God, so that I cannot come down: why should the work cease, whilst I leave it and come down to you?” No one ever built a statue to a critic! Today is the day to love and serve God! Nehemiah refused to come down off the walls and “discuss” the petty objections of his critics.
John 21:22 – Accountability! It is a great day when you discover that you will give an account to the Lord for your life. Peter asked the Lord, “What’s going to happen to John?” I love Jesus’ answer – “If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? Follow thou Me!” Daniel Webster said, “My greatest thought is my accountability to God.” I couldn’t agree more!
Serving Jesus Christ in the ministry with my family is the greatest joy of my life!!!