Monday, February 25, 2008

When Fishermen won't Fish...

It is a sad state of affairs when we have men who are called to preach who would rather sit than sacrifice. Many of our larger churches are filled with men who have a calling on their lives, yet they are satisfied to sit and soak in the blessings instead of heading into the harvest.

The problem that I see is two-fold…

First of all, these “ministers” that will not minister come in two general categories.

1. Spotlight Seekers: Somewhere along the road these men got the impression that their calling is all about the pulpit and not about people. They are performers instead of pioneers.

2. Comfort Seekers: These men refuse to leave their comfort zone. Either from fear of failure or pure selfishness they cower in the safety of their comfort.

Second of all, many pastors refuse to release these men. They would rather have a “saint” in the pew than send a laborer into the harvest.

1. We as pastors need to be actively training young men for the harvest. When we do, we will multiply our own ministry hundreds of times over.

2. We need to be investing our young men into other places. Send them to a home missions work with their expenses paid, to encourage that pastor; start a daughter work; a preaching point; or raise funds for them to get practical experience as an AIMer (associate in missions).

3. We must refuse to be selfish.

4. We must refuse to allow ministers to be satisfied to sit. Pastors should push, prod, and preach them into the harvest.

It is a tragedy when fishermen refuse to fish. All around us we have a lost and dying world. Cities full of hungry people pray for a man with a burden to come.

I recently heard of a church with approximately 20 people, land, and a building that could not find a pastor for over three years. Now, another pastor in the area has picked up their burden and is pastoring these hungry people on an interim basis. It is so sad when men would rather languish away on a pew than be active in the harvest in a place like this.

Matt 9:38 Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest.

Friday, February 1, 2008

7 Step Cure for a Critical Spirit

Romans 14:10-13 (AMP) “Why do you criticize and pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you look down upon or despise your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God. And so each of us shall give an account of himself - give an answer in reference to judgment - to God. Then let us no more criticize and blame and pass judgment on one another, but rather decide and endeavor never to put a stumbling block or an obstacle or a hindrance in the way of a brother.”

7 Step Cure for a Critical Spirit

Isaiah 26:3
3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.

1. Focus on God not Man
2. Trust in God

2 Cor 10:12
12 For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

3. Do not compare yourself to others

1 Tim 5:19
19 Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.

4. Do not Receive an Accusation

So many people are ready to receive bad information. They revel in the negative. They believe and pass on the information whether is proof or not.

I call it having a “Ready Ear”

Mark 11:25
25 And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.

5. Forgive

Rom 12:2
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

6. Be not Conformed to this World

There are whole industries in our culture today that thrive on nothing more than the art of criticizing…

Art Critics… Movie Critics… Fashion Police… Politic Pundits… Tabloid Journalism… Talk Shows… News Cast

7. Be Transformed by the Renewing of Our Minds

Wash your mind with the Word. Strengthen your resolve with the renewing of the Holy Ghost.

The Bible doesn’t promise peace to those who dwell on the faults of others! It says that the Lord will keep them in perfect peace, whose minds are stayed on Him!

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