Summary: A sermon examining the primary focus of our ministry.
Evaluating Your Ministry Mindset
After a town-wide revival had concluded, three pastors were discussing the results with one another. The Methodist minister said, “The revival worked out great for us! We gained four new families.” The Presbyterian preacher said, “We did better than that! We gained six new families.” The Baptist pastor said, “Well, we did even better than that! We got rid of our 10 biggest trouble makers!” (Steve Shepherd http://www.sermoncentral.com/print_friendly.asp?SermonID=161978
If you have been around church for any length of time you know that you will encounter some “unique” individuals. And if we are honest, some of them are harder to love than others. ...Some people are great assets to the church... Some are givers... Some are takers... Some are only there for what they can get out of the church... Some are there simply to cause trouble... Some are extremely positive ...Some can find fault at the drop of a hat... Some will do anything that is needed... And some won’t do anything...But I am thankful that in the church you can find some sold out devoted servants of Christ.
I can’t imagine what life would be like without my faith family. There are certain words that I would use to describe most of the people in this church.
There are many other words that I could use to describe the actions and attitudes of those who are a part of this assembly. One thing that I am extremely thankful for is that we have a church filled with “Ministers”. When I say “minister” I am not referring to vocational ministry but rather “one who serves others”. Let’s take this even further, a true “minister” is someone who is first and foremost a “servant of Jesus Christ”. You are more than just a member of this church… you are a part of this ministry. And when it comes to ministry I want you to ask yourself an important question……Are you having a positive impact or a negative impact? There is no middle ground, there is no neutral! You are either adding to this ministry or taking away from it!
Ask yourself the old question “What kind of church would my church be if every member was just like me?” - I think it is important for us to periodically take a moment and evaluate our personal contributions to the ministry. If we look real close, then we may find that there are some changes to be made in how we serve others and most importantly how we serve our Savior.
Background: Thus far in his Epistle to the Galatians, Paul has covered a great deal of information. He has declared and defended his Apostleship. He has reminded the people of Christ’s sacrifice for their sins. He has reinforced the idea of salvation through GRACE! He has addressed the issue of returning to the bondage of the Law. He has exposed and warned against false teaching. In the verses immediately preceding our text for today, Paul shared: a brief testimony of his life before Christ, he talked about his conversion and his life in Christ up to this point. Here in chapter 2, he continues to describe some of the issues that he had faced since he began to serve the Lord. He is telling the believers of Galatia that the issues they were facing were not new, he had dealt with these same problems and similar troublemakers in the past.
In our selected text, Paul speaks about the actions concerning different groups of people.
1. There were some who Paul served - The Galatians
2. There were some who served with Paul - Titus & Barnabas
3, There were some who hindered Paul’s service - The Judaizers
Some of them had a positive impact on the ministry and some had a negative impact. The same types of people and the same actions can be found in churches today. It is my desire that through this message you can identify what sort of impact you are having. Let’s look to the text and consider the subject “Evaluating Your Ministry Mindset” As we perform this ministry evaluation there are 3 questions that I would like to ask you:
i. Do You Invest In Others?
ii. Do You Work With Others?
iii. Do You Cause Trouble For Others?
Each of these are common actions found in most churches today. So, as we “Evaluate Our Ministry Mindset” I ask you…
I. Do You Invest In Others? - v1 Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also.
When Paul returned to Jerusalem he was accompanied by Barnabas and Titus. These three men were fellow-laborers in the ministry. They worked together to spread the Gospel, but they also benefited each another. These men who were being used of God to minister to others also ministered to one another. Notice: