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Unveiling the Heart of Ministry: Love, Relationships, and Purpose

Why did you get into ministry in the first place?

It’s an important question to consider, especially as time, joys, wounds, highs, and lows accumulate. It all starts with "why".

Your initial why may sound like mine. I love Jesus. I love people. I want people to be loved by Jesus. Simple. It’s really all about relationships with people who need the love of Jesus.

Think about this. Jesus came because God loves people. This is simple, but it is not simplistic. God could have shown His love in a variety of ways. He could have simply spoken from the heavens. He could have spoken through animals like Balaam’s donkey. He could have simply provided for our physical, bodily needs through food and shelter within His creation and called it good enough. He could have done whatever He wanted to do to show us His love and care. He’s God after all.

Yet, the most beautiful mystery the world has ever known is that God chose to send His Son to show His love for people. Jesus took on flesh for you. Jesus died and rose for you. Jesus is madly in love with you. Jesus smiles with joy over the people you get to lead in your local context.

God’s why in Jesus is you, us, and the world.

It’s a magnificent thing on which to meditate. Stunning, really.

You are God’s why.

God’s why should inform your why.

If you’re down about the travails of leadership, wounded from dreams unfulfilled, overwhelmed with administrative burdens or tentative about dreaming new dreams, I’d invite you to embrace the KISS principle.




Son (or Daughter).

Get back to the meaning of it all. It’s all about relationships.

I’m not telling this story to make you jealous of my context…but I really love the people I get to go on mission with at Christ Greenfield and in the ULC. We’re not a perfect place, but we’re a people-first place. We want to deeply love those who are here, and we want to grow the family. Community is our context. We want everyone to feel like they deeply belong in our family of ministries. I’m deeply proud of what the Holy Spirit has done uniting us to Himself and one another by faith.

This deep love for one another is what allows us to disagree agreeably, dream big dreams, and take our next steps to accomplish our God-sized dreams. It is a grand adventure with Jesus leading the way.

Leader, I pray you can say the same thing about your ministry family. If you can’t, or can’t all the time, I’d invite you to get back to your first why—people.

Today I had a three-hour block of time open up with a meeting cancellation. I brought my lunch and was preparing to sit down at my computer for a working lunch—emails are always there. Yet, the Holy Spirit led me to look out in the courtyard and see students going into our cafeteria. He impressed my conscience to act, “What are you doing eating alone, son? Go, sit and eat with the kids!”

I obeyed and had lunch with talkative, joy-filled first graders. It was a riot of a good time.

They asked me questions like, “What grade are you in?” “Were humans alive with dinosaurs?” “What is your favorite fruit? Mine is mango.”

At that moment my why was rekindled. It’s all about people. It’s all about people being loved by Jesus. The divine mystery of it all is that Jesus wants to use us to love His people for whom He died and rose.

That is the meaning of it all.


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