Lessons from ministry: who am I?

My journey through ministry often feels like a life long
quest to discover what sort of minister I am. I’ve now been the minister of two
churches, one smaller (by UK Baptist standards) and one larger, each with their
own set of challenges and demands.

In many respects the first was tougher; looking back it felt
as if my character was under question and I was been squeezed into a mould
created by other people’s expectations. The second has, without doubt, been
harder work but probably better fits my gifts and skills.

Like everyone else I’m a mix of strengths and weaknesses. If
you only know me from this blog it’s probably not obvious that my primary focus
is on preaching and teaching, and this is perhaps the main strength of my
ministry (though I’m too prone to nuance to be a great headline speaker or church
visionary). My organisational skills help me to keep abreast of a wide range of
different aspects of church (and wider Christian life), but they also make me
too eclectic: a generalist rather than a specialist.

Does any of this matter? Probably not: but having a sense of
your own strengths and weaknesses does help you to focus your energy in more productive ways. What matters is discipleship; walking
with Christ with love; being faithful with what comes your way with
thanksgiving; seeking to do the best you can with humility.

That said, when my ministry is over I hope I will have made a positive contribution to the church and helped to futher the kingdom of God. What about you? 



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