INSIGHTS from Bill Bright
Reflections from the late Founder and President/Chairman Emeritus of Campus Crusade for Christ International
Colonel Glenn Jones, USAF (Ret)
God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God (Matthew 5:8, NLT).
Glenn Jones was one of the most outstanding young men I have ever known. When I first met him, he was a full colonel in the U.S. Air Force, promoted ahead of his peers, and was the Executive Assistant to the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Pentagon.
A graduate of Texas A&M University and now a gung-ho Air Force pilot, Glenn was on a fast track for promotion to the highest ranks.
Brilliant and gifted, Glenn flew the fastest airplanes ever built and had a brilliant military career marked out for him. He was about to be promoted to the rank of general, a club that is very, very exclusive.
But Glenn turned away from that great honor, for an even greater honor. He decided to obey the call of God and dedicate his life into full-time Christian service and join the staff of Campus Crusade for Christ. He was on fire for Christ and was a great witness for our Lord. He became my Chief of Staff, and was a key person in many important world evangelism projects.
After a few years, with his Air Force retirement, which he took early, Glenn could have taken it easy and never worked another day. But that was not Glenn. He wanted to serve the Lord with every breath that he had. He once said, "I'd rather burn out than rust out."
While still young, Glenn met an untimely death due to cancer. I remember sitting in a hospital room with him and his precious wife, Barbara. They never complained or questioned God, but always had the victory, with joy.
I remember Glenn's work efficiency and his uncanny ability to get along with everyone and get things done. But the thing I remember most about Glenn is his pure heart. I never heard him criticize anyone. His heart was full of positive thoughts instead of negative thoughts.
Glenn reminds me of a spiritual principle. Wherever people have a pure heart, they walk humbly before God and men and always view their fellow man with purity. They assume that others are pure of heart as they are. In contrast, people who have sin in their life, who are critical of everyone else, are really trying to camouflage their own imperfections, their own sin.
People with pure hearts are people who live joyful, radiant, supernatural lives for the glory of God, like Glenn Jones.
"Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God" (Matthew 5:8, KJV). Glenn has now seen God, and those of us who trust Christ will also see Glenn.
Yours for helping to fulfill the Great Commission each year until our Lord returns,
Crosswalk - Heartlight Daily Verse: Hebrews 7:25, April 11, 2005
Heartlight Daily Devotional
Jesus is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.
New International Version
THOUGHTS ABOUT TODAY'S VERSE...
Jesus didn't just come and die for us. He wasn't raised only to give us life. No, as incredible as those gifts are, he adds another until he can come and take us home to God: Jesus lives to ask God for grace in our behalf.
Precious Savior, my Jesus, how I love you. You sacrificed heaven for me. You gave up dignity to redeem me. You destroyed death to assure me. But today, I am most thankful and most aware that every prayer I make, every step I take, you are in the Father's presence to bless me. Thank you. Amen.
Heartlight Daily devotional and prayer are written by Phil Ware of HEARTLIGHT Magazine, on the web at:
Crosswalk - TGIF Marketplace Meditation: The Gospel of the Kingdom, April 11, 2005
TGIF Marketplace Meditation
The Gospel of the Kingdom
This is how we know we are in Him: Whoever claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did. 1 John 2:5b-6
When Christ came to earth, He came to bring to mankind the gospel of the Kingdom. Over the centuries, the Church has tended to emphasize only a portion of the gospel. That portion is the gospel of salvation. However, Jesus came that we might have more than just salvation. He came to give us a whole new life that was accompanied by signs, wonders, and His Spirit living in us and revealing Himself to us daily. He came so that we might walk on this earth as He did. If our lives are not reflecting the same things as Jesus' did, we must ask why?
I have noticed three distinct types of workplace believers throughout my 24 years of walking with Christ. First, many of us come to Christ out of a need for salvation. Our hearts have been touched by His call on our lives. We reason and analyze the claims of Christ and make a decision for Him. It is the convenient time to accept Him in our lives. This first stage is often characterized by a "Bless me, Lord" attitude toward God. It is the first stage that primarily brings salvation into our lives. Some never really go past this first stage.
The second stage is the crisis stage. A crisis takes place in our lives, and we are motivated to seek Christ with a whole heart. However, this motivation is not out of pure love for Christ; rather, it is motivated by the desire to get out of the pain of living. The motivation is to solve "the what" versus "the why" in my life at the time. This stage is best characterized as "Help me, Lord."
In the third stage we begin to experience the gospel of the Kingdom. It is the place where Jesus resided in His walk with His heavenly Father. It is the place of conviction. The number of people who live at this level are quite few, but these people are experiencing the reality of a walk with God that is foreign to all others. They are seeing daily occurrences of His involvement in their lives. They are motivated by a deep love for Him. They know Him. These people have an attitude characterized by these thoughts, "Have me, Lord; though He slay me, still will I trust Him."
Where are you today? Have you merely accepted His salvation to simply float along? Or do you seek Him with a whole heart only when a crisis occurs? His desire is for you and me to live a life of conviction, motivated by our love for Him and His love for us. This is where we will experience the gospel of the Kingdom.
Crosswalk - Neil Anderson's Daily in Christ, April 11, 2005
Neil Anderson's Daily in Christ
THE ENEMY'S POTENTIAL
How can anyone enter the strong man's house and carry off his property, unless he first binds the strong man? (Matthew 12:29).
Another common misconception of the spiritual world is that some problems are psychological and some are spiritual. This misconception implies a division between the human soul and spirit, which does not exist. There is no inner conflict which is not psychological, because there is never a time when your mind, emotions and will are not involved. Similarly, there is no problem which is not spiritual. There is no time when God is not present or when it is safe for you to take off the armor of God. The tendency is to polarize into a deliverance ministry, ignoring the realities of the physical realm, or a psychotherapeutic ministry, ignoring the spiritual realm.
Dr. Paul Hiebert, a missions specialist, contends that, as long as believers accept a two-tier worldview with God confined to the supernatural and the natural world operating for all practical purposes according to autonomous scientific laws, Christianity will continue to be a secularizing force in the world. If your worldview does not recognize the activity of the god of this world in human problems, it is at best incomplete and at worst a distortion of reality.
Another misconception is that Christian aren't subject to demon activity. The prevailing belief among evangelicals today is that Christians cannot be severely oppressed by demons. Even the suggestion that demonic influence can be part of the problem often prompts the hasty disclaimer, "Impossible! I'm a Christian!"
Nothing has done greater damage to diagnosing spiritual problems than this untruth. If Satan can't touch the church, why are we instructed to put on the armor of God, to resist the devil, to stand firm, and to be alert? If we aren't susceptible to being wounded or trapped by Satan, why does Paul describe our relationship to the powers of darkness as a wrestling match? Those who deny the enemy's potential for destruction are the most vulnerable to it.
Father, I don't want to be ignorant in matters of the spiritual world. Remove all blinders from my eyes so I may see clearly and share the truth with others.
This daily devotional is published and distributed by Crosswalk.com. It is written by Neil Anderson at
Crosswalk - Bible Pathways, April 11, 2005
Read II Samuel 1 -- 2
In Today's Reading:
Saul killed in battle; David mourns the deaths of Saul and Jonathan; David crowned king of Judah; Ish-bosheth made king of Israel.
Saul had driven David into exile from his family, his wife, and his friends, as a fugitive far from the palace. An Amalekite nomad, who carried in his hand the crown of Saul, mistakenly thought David would be pleased that he had executed him. The Amalekite could not conceive of David not rejoicing over the death of such an enemy. But, David mourned, and wept, and fasted until evening . . . because they were fallen by the sword. . . . David lamented. . . . The beauty of Israel is slain upon your high places: how are the mighty fallen! Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon; lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice (II Samuel 1:12,17,19-20).
The world delights in the failures of Christians. Surely no Christian should ever be involved in gossip about the failures of fellow Christians. If any man among you seem to be religious (God-fearing), and bridles (controls) not his tongue, but deceives his own heart, this man's religion is vain (worthless) (James 1:26).
Now that Saul was dead, who would reign in his place? Israel was without a king. David had been anointed long ago by Samuel the prophet to be the next king of Israel (see I Samuel 16:13). However, Abner, Saul's cousin and the powerful commander of Saul's army, was determined to retain his position. He persuaded the elders of Israel to put Saul's only surviving son Ish-bosheth on the throne over all the tribes. David could have felt justified to face Abner in battle for his right as God's chosen successor of Saul. Instead, David inquired of the LORD, saying, Shall I go up into any of the cities of Judah? And the LORD said to him, Go up. And David said, Where shall I go up? And He said, To Hebron. . . . And the men of Judah came, and there they anointed David king over the house of Judah (II Samuel 2:1,4).
How prone we are to jump at opportunities for personal advancement rather than to seek God and His plan for our lives. But we need not fight for our rights. David prayed for God's will to be done in His way and in His time. It is comforting for Christians to know that: Great peace have they which love Your Law: and nothing shall offend them (Psalm 119:165) and the battle is the LORD's (I Samuel 17:47).
1:2 did obeisance = bowed in honor; 1:9 anguish = extreme pain; 1:18 use = song; 2:6 requite = repay; 2:14 play before us = hold a contest as to which side has the best soldiers; 2:17 sore = fierce; 2:26 following = pursuing; 2:32 sepulchre = tomb.
In David's noble poem of sorrow (II Samuel 1:17-27). David forgot all his years of suffering at the hand of Saul and considered only the pleasant things. Here David typifies Christ, who loved us even when we were dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1).
Pray for The International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Valentine DeSanta, Jr. > BP Staff: Barbara Bivens > Government Officials: Rep. Kevin Brady (TX) and Rep. Mark Kennedy (MN) > Country: Sudan (34 million) at the eastern end of the Sahara Desert > Major languages: Arabic and Nubian > Limited religious freedom > 74% Muslim; 15% king worship, spirit-possession cults, and ancestral spirit worship; 5% Roman Catholic; 3% Protestant > Prayer Suggestion: Fast, sanctify yourself, and unite in prayer with others as you cry unto the Lord (Joel 1:14).
Optional Reading: Acts 12
Memory Verse for the Week: I Thessalonians 5:16
Crosswalk - Spurgeon's Morning & Evening Devotions, April 11, 2005
Spurgeon's Morning & Evening Devotions
Morning, April 11
"God, even our own God."- Psalm 67:6
It is strange how little use we make of the spiritual blessings which God gives us, but it is stranger still how little use we make of God himself. Though he is "our own God," we apply ourselves but little to him, and ask but little of him. How seldom do we ask counsel at the hands of the Lord! How often do we go about our business, without seeking his guidance! In our troubles how constantly do we strive to bear our burdens ourselves, instead of casting them upon the Lord, that he may sustain us! This is not because we may not, for the Lord seems to say, "I am thine, soul, come and make use of me as thou wilt; thou mayst freely come to my store, and the oftener the more welcome."
It is our own fault if we make not free with the riches of our God. Then, since thou hast such a friend, and he invites thee, draw from him daily. Never want whilst thou hast a God to go to; never fear or faint whilst thou hast God to help thee; go to thy treasure and take whatever thou needest-there is all that thou canst want.
Learn the divine skill of making God all things to thee. He can supply thee with all, or, better still, he can be to thee instead of all. Let me urge thee, then, to make use of thy God.
Make use of him in prayer. Go to him often, because he is thy God. O, wilt thou fail to use so great a privilege? Fly to him, tell him all thy wants.
Use him constantly by faith at all times. If some dark providence has beclouded thee, use thy God as a "sun;" if some strong enemy has beset thee, find in Jehovah a "shield," for he is a sun and shield to his people. If thou hast lost thy way in the mazes of life, use him as a "guide," for he will direct thee. Whatever thou art, and wherever thou art, remember God is just what thou wantest, and just where thou wantest, and that he can do all thou wantest.
Evening, April 11
"The Lord is King for ever and ever." - Psalm 10:16
Jesus Christ is no despotic claimant of divine right, but he is really and truly the Lord's anointed! "It hath pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell." God hath given to him all power and all authority. As the Son of man, he is now head over all things to his church, and he reigns over heaven, and earth, and hell, with the keys of life and death at his girdle.
Certain princes have delighted to call themselves kings by the popular will, and certainly our Lord Jesus Christ is such in his church. If it could be put to the vote whether he should be King in the church, every believing heart would crown him. O that we could crown him more gloriously than we do! We would count no expense to be wasted that could glorify Christ.
Suffering would be pleasure, and loss would be gain, if thereby we could surround his brow with brighter crowns, and make him more glorious in the eyes of men and angels. Yes, he shall reign. Long live the King! All hail to thee, King Jesus! Go forth, ye virgin souls who love your Lord, bow at his feet, strew his way with the lilies of your love, and the roses of your gratitude: "Bring forth the royal diadem, and crown him Lord of all.
" Moreover, our Lord Jesus is King in Zion by right of conquest: he has taken and carried by storm the hearts of his people, and has slain their enemies who held them in cruel bondage. In the Red Sea of his own blood, our Redeemer has drowned the Pharaoh of our sins: shall he not be King in Jeshurun? He has delivered us from the iron yoke and heavy curse of the law: shall not the Liberator be crowned? We are his portion, whom he has taken out of the hand of the Amorite with his sword and with his bow: who shall snatch his conquest from his hand? All hail, King Jesus! We gladly own thy gentle sway! Rule in our hearts for ever, thou lovely Prince of Peace.
Devotion - Spiritual Leprosy
Throughout history, leprosy has been a most feared and misunderstood disease. Its destructive effects can include loss of limbs and sight, but the true cause of these deformities is that leprosy attacks the nervous system. With the loss of feeling, infection sets in, debilitating the body very slowly. Due to numbness and the body's inability to respond as it would if it felt pain, the victim can be unaware that a problem even exists!
The ability to feel and sense pain, whether physical or emotional, should not be taken for granted. We need to be thankful not to have spiritual leprosy, for without pain, we can inadvertently injure and ultimately destroy ourselves.
God may use pain to guide and motivate us, as the Prodigal Son was motivated to return back to his father. Pain can also be used in our lives as a teacher. "As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as His own children. Whoever heard of a child who was never disciplined?" (Hebrews 12:7) God may use pain to protect us from a worse situation, just as He allows a fever to warn of infection within our body.
"The suffering You sent was good for me, for it taught me to pay attention to Your principles." Psalm 119:71
Do you ever find yourself wishing to live a Christian life at a pain-free level? Jesus says that if anyone would come after Him, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow Him. (Matthew 16:24) The Lord did not begin or end His life at a painless level, and it is impossible for a faithful child of God to live problem-free either!
"And since we are His children, we will share His treasures - for everything God gives to His Son, Christ, is ours, too. But if we are to share His glory, we must also share His suffering." Romans 8:17
Often the tension and pressure in our homes can build to a level that makes us restless and on edge. But if we take the time to listen, we can always find the calming voice of God. How are you dealing with those circumstances and what steps are you taking to make sure you find Christ's peace in the middle of them? FAMILY STUFF's Dan Seaborn tells us to make sure we set aside a few moments and think about the things that bring turmoil or strife to our lives. Read more in his FREE article, "Pre-op Moments.":
Dr. Charles Betters of IN HIS GRIP provides us a window into one woman's trust in the Lord throughout her trials - and how we can rely on God for our future by giving us the grace we need for the moment - this moment. Read more about God's sufficient grace in our times of trial in the FREE article, "Grace for the Moment: Michelle's Story.":
May the Lord richly bless you!
The Oneplace.com Team
Listen for Life!
by: Dan Seaborn
That Tuesday morning we were in the pre-operation area. The nurses had checked all of Alan's vital signs, and people in hospital garb had peeked, poked and prodded at every inch of his little body. As we continued to wait for surgery, my wife pulled out one of Alan's favorite books and began to read. I positioned myself against the wall and listened to her lovely voice. It was so peaceful and soothing that we became distracted from our troubles and lost track of why we were there in the first place. When the doctor arrived to say it was time to go, Alan rubbed his eyes and said, "I was enjoying that so much I forgot where we were." The hospital staff wheeled him off as Jane and I chuckled about how caught up he was in the story. But the story had an effect on us as well; without immediately noticing, a calmness had settled over our anxious hearts too and we were experiencing peace. Certainly, the Lord had visited us that morning.
Often the tension and pressure in our homes can build to a level that makes us restless and on edge. But if we take the time to listen, we can always find the calming voice of God, bringing His peace to us. Colossians 3:15 emphasizes, "Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful."
To apply this scripture to our hearts, make sure you set aside a few moments and think about the things that are bringing turmoil or strife to your life. How are you dealing with those circumstances and what steps are you taking to make sure you find Christ's peace in the middle of them?
I personally find it helpful to go to a quiet place near a lake where we live to relax and focus on the Lord and read His Word. It's there that much of the turmoil that I face is erased. You might find it helpful to do the same. Find a peaceful, quiet place and simply spend some time reading the Lord's Word or singing praises and praying to him. It's when we find our value in Christ that the issues of this world tend to slide into their appropriate spot.
How thankful I am for His peace! To know that He is with me in all the big and little anxieties of my life, calming my fearsóthis is too wonderful for words!
Some thoughts you might ponder for your family:
1. Who creates the tension in your home and what are you going to do to change that?
2. What positive steps can be taken to eliminate the tension?
3. What situation is looming before you today that you fear or dread and makes you need to seek Christ's peace?
Thursday, January 30, 2003
Grace for the Moment: Michelle's Story
Excerpted from Treasures of Faith
by: Chuck and Sharon Betters
I was the mother of wonderful three-year-old twin boys and a beautiful little girl. But, nearly four years after our first child, Joshua, was stillborn, I was still bitterly angry with God. Because I felt He had failed to protect me from that terrible loss, I could not trust Him to protect me from similar losses. Reading the Scriptures and honestly asking Him questions left me feeling even more abandoned, so I gave up expecting to feel His love or His presence in my life. The anger I always carried around so deep within me eventually began to break out; I started to lash out at my husband and my children, and I knew I was in need of help.
Through events only God could have arranged, I started meeting with a Godly older woman who seemed able to see right into my soul. My anger toward my family was bad enough, but this was only a symptom of the greater problem; my anger toward God was the real poison destroying my life. My friend recognized this, and she patiently began to show me the way back into fellowship with God by sharing the details of her own pain-filled life and how God had taught her to trust Him through those hard times. Yet my heart, seared and defiant, continued to resist.
Finally, one Sunday morning, the many months of loving support and encouragement from my friend and the ministry of the church broke through to me. God transformed me from a broken despairing woman into a woman who felt His presence deeply. Suddenly I knew He loved me, and never wanted to go back to my old way of living. Every day He surprised me with new revelations of His love and specific care for my family and me. I soon began to realize that He knew me even better than I knew myself.
God also patiently began teaching me to hold onto life loosely; I started to realize that my life might change at any moment, as it had the day I lost my son, and that I needed to be prepared. I began to see all of my circumstances in the context of eternity, and I knew I could count on the Lord to be with me through any hardships that might lie ahead. I had the feeling that God might be preparing me for something difficult, but I wasn't afraid because He was also teaching me that I could trust Him to give me the grace I would need when that moment came.
September 14, 1998, started out like an ordinary day for us, but it turned out to be a dramatic turning point in our lives. That was the day a pediatric oncologist told us one of our three-year-old twins, Jacob, might have cancer. I was terrified. "What will happen to Jacob if he does have cancer? Will he need chemotherapy? Will he need radiation? How sick will he get? Will he lose all his hair? How long will it take for him to get better?" The question behind the other questions, of course, was one I could hardly even contemplate: "Will Jacob get better?" The thought of an empty space at the table, of putting away his favorite things, of having only memories of him to hold onto, was more than I thought I could bear. Yet, in response to each of my questions God's gentle answer was always, "My grace is sufficient for you."
"Yes, yes," I would cry, afraid. "But what about Jacob?"
"Your times are in My hands, Michelle, past, present and future. Know that I love both you and Jacob and that I will give you the grace you will need for this moment"
As the doctor described for my husband and I the surgery needed to remove our son's cancer-ridden kidney and the subsequent tests to determine whether the cancer had spread, I thought, "How can I put my three-year-old son through the pain of surgery? What if something happens to the other kidney, then he will surely die." Again I could hear God saying, "My grace is sufficient for you for this moment, Trust Me, Michelle, trust Me in this."
Fear seized my heart again when the radiographs of Jacob's lungs indicated that the cancer in his little body might have spread. I wondered how this would affect his chances of getting better. What if they think they've cured him but his cancer returns? Each time I found my anxious thoughts running far ahead of God Ėinto all the might-happens and what-ifs and dark and fearsome possibilities Ė He would bring me back to His truth. As long as I remained with God for that moment, He gave me the strength to handle whatever challenge I faced.
Our journey in this terrible land of cancer has only just begun. We are still waiting for test results to determine the extent of Jacob's cancer. We are strangers in an alien country. The language where we live includes the words "malignancy" and "terminal" and "life-threatening." We don't want to be here; we want to take our children and go elsewhere, anywhere. Our journey through grief, following Joshua's death, taught us much about God's character and His loving faithfulness, and now we know that the future, whatever it may bring, is in His hands. In this journey we are on, in this landscape filled with tubes, and monitors, and small children lying on hospital beds, we are trusting the Lord to teach us once again how to rely on Him for our future by giving us the grace we need for the moment Ė this moment.
Excerpted from Treasures of Faith, Living Boldly in View of God's Promises, pages 66-69. For more on living by faith in a broken world, read Treasures of Faith by Chuck and Sharon Betters, available through MARK INC Ministries (www.markinc.org) and fine books stores everywhere. Used by permission of P & R Publishing Company, copyright ©1999 by Chuck and Sharon Betters. All rights reserved. Materials are not to be distributed to other web locations for retrieval, published in other media, or mirrored at other sites without permission of P & R Publishing Company.
Tuesday, October 29, 2002
Crosswalk Pastors Resource - Decide to Delegate: It's the Only Way to Make a Disciple, April 11, 2005
Decide to Delegate: It's the Only Way to Make a Disciple
Dr. Charles R. Phelps
Many pastors struggle with stress and the lack of ministerial fulfillment. I would like to suggest that making one decision can provide the cure for both of these diseases. You must decide to delegate.
D.L. Moody said, "It's better to get ten men to do the work than to do the work of ten men!" Moody's sage advice is filled with scriptural wisdom. Myron Rush makes this point: "A person may be in a leadership position, but if he isn't willing to delegate, he isn't a leader at all-he is a hired hand"*
The Bible is filled with detailed descriptions of delegation. Solomon mastered the fine art of managing through men, and the kingdom was enlarged. The fourth chapter of I Kings introduces us to those responsible for Solomon's armies, meals, and taxes. Our Savior was certainly willing to delegate. The first eighteen verses of Luke 10 record the sending out of seventy itinerant preachers. After the Lord gave them detailed instructions, He sent them to preach. Though these messengers were inexperienced and far less capable than the Master, their ministry was blessed by God. Eventually these messengers would "turn the world upside down" (Acts 17:6).
Solomon and the Savior both knew something that we in ministry often forget. They knew that disciples are made through delegation. They knew that delegation is godly and that the failure to delegate is ungodly. They knew that when God created Adam He placed Him in Eden "to dress it and to keep it" (Genesis 2:15). God brought "every beast of the field" and "the fowl of the air" before Adam "to see what he would call them" (Genesis 2:19, 20). The Psalmist explicitly reveals God's intent to delegate in Psalm 8:4-6, saying: "What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet."
Many in ministry need to hear the wise counsel of Jethro, who told his very capable son-in-law Moses to "divide and conquer" or else be conquered by frustration (Exodus 18:18-23). Moses listened to his father-in-law and followed his advice. Soon seventy men were recruited, trained, and commissioned. Moses discovered that "it is better to get seventy men to do the job than to do the job of seventy men."
Why do we not delegate?
We fail to plan.
Delegation requires foresight. Recruiting someone at the last minute is called "dumping," not delegating. Successful delegation will require successful communication, and such communication will require time. In order to delegate, you will need to think ahead.
We are proud.
We think that no one else can do the job as well as we can. Our education, experience, and aptitude can form walls between us and those whom God has called us to mentor. We tend to think that since the person in the pew has never been a student in seminary, he is unfit or unprepared. Have we forgotten that God was more able to name the animals than Adam and that Christ was a far more powerful preacher than the seventy? In order to delegate you must be humble.
We lack vision for growth.
Ministries are built by men who understand that pyramids are made tall by widening their foundations. In order to widen the foundation of our ministries, we must decide to delegate. Spectators become critics, but participants become partners. In order to delegate, we must maintain a vision for growth.
What are the benefits of delegation?
We avoid burnout.
When Barnabas was overwhelmed with the growing needs of the ministry in Antioch, he recruited a man of questionable qualifications by the name of Paul (Acts 11:19-25). The decision Barnabas made spared both the minister and the ministry, bringing blessings instead of blisters (Acts 11:26).
We develop leaders.
The best way to protect a church from the plague of inexperience is to solicit involvement and thereby develop leaders. The Bible teaches us that every member needs to be a minister (I Corinthians 12). Pastors are specifically commissioned to take the treasures entrusted to them and pass them along to another generation (II Timothy 2:2). Pastors who provide people with the tools and the opportunity to minister will soon find themselves sending forth disciples into the ministry. Where disciples are being developed and deployed, the Spirit will always replenish the ministry with ready recruits.
We obey God.
Since everyone will appear individually "before the judgment seat of Christ" (II Corinthians 5:10), it is important for each one to be involved in the work of Christ. People who never run will never hear "Well done!" It is our Savior's desire that "every man have praise of God" (I Corinthians 4:5). Making sure that men and women involve themselves in carrying cups of cold water in the name of the Lord is the duty of the disciple-making minister.
We encourage members to pray and study.
When church members become servants and teachers, their knees bend and their Bibles are opened. It is natural that involvement in ministry will prompt people to pray and to study God's Word.
We encourage creativity.
It is amazing to discover that involving two workers in a task will result in four different ways to do it. Such creativity can be channeled to come up with one best solution and will teach people to agree and work together (Amos 3:3).
Delegation should be an ongoing process. Make a list of the tasks that you need to delegate. Write the name of someone who needs to be recruited. Write out a job description and make an appointment with the person whom the Spirit placed upon your heart. Each time you do this, you will be developing a disciple in God's work. Follow this prescription continually and you will feel the stress dissipate and find fulfillment in the ministry.
*Myron Rush, Management: A Biblical Approach (Colorado Springs: Cook Communications Ministries, 2002) p. 132.
Pastor Phelps has been the senior pastor of Trinity Baptist Church, Concord, New Hampshire, since 1989. He is the vice president of the Fundamental Baptist Fellowship.
Today's Christian Preacher is the magazine for those involved in ministry and those training for ministry service who live in the United States. TCP won't help you preach a better sermon or build a larger ministry. It will help you in your personal life. For more information, call 1-800-588-7744. (c) Right Ideas, Inc., 2005, www.rightideas.us