Bible reference: Acts 20:24
In life, it's easy to start something new. A new diet, an exercise program, a new job, new relationships, a new beginning. But life isn't a 50 yard dash, but a marathon. There are lots of good starters, but poor finishers. I have known many who have started well with a bang, but finish with a whimper.
People start with a bang, then get hit with criticism. There are lots of people who say things that put you down. Sometimes the stress spills over into marriage and cause problems. People sometimes leave ministry with a broken heart. Paul did not want this to happen to the elders in Ephesus. He wants us to reach the finish line. Paul was sharing from his own life the trials and perseverance. 2 Timothy 4:7
Paul in Acts 20:24 had a difficult task. Paul did not consider his own life more important than what Jesus called him to. He put his trust in Jesus. God is in control, that's all we need to know. God is most important on your life. You may think I'm ordinary, it doesn't apply to me, but it does.
To finish the course, you must recognize and accept he has given you a ministry. It's not a 50 m dash, it's for life. There is no such thing as a Christian without a ministry. It is significant that every time the subject of spiritual gifts is mentioned, the words "every, all" are there. Every Christian will give an account to God for their gifts and ministry.
Bible Reference: 1 Peter 4:10
Every parent is given the responsibility to steward your child/ren up. We give an account to God one day.
Bible Reference: Matthew 25:14-30
Whether you are a waiter, mechanic, housewife, carpenter, etc., you are in ministry. Ministry is a way of thinking that permeates through all our life; it's the way we live. It may mean serving someone with a practical need, sharing the Gospel, prayer, minister through the Word. First in our life is God, then marriage, then family, etc.
With God we minister. One of the things that have happened in church life, we think preaching or singing is ministry, but ministry is relationship- serving others. Ministry- focus on others instead of ourselves. The world seems crazy but God is in control. We don't focus on self but others and we're available to God. It will change your life, the way you think, act.
You follow what God wants and he will give you what you need. God will see all the brokenness but he will see you are available, and he will use you to fulfill his purposes. Everyone has fundamental beliefs, make sure they are in line with God.
You won't fulfill your ministry unless you are aware that you have one.2 Corinthians- ministry of reconciliation.
God doesn't think you're too busy to serve him. Your ministry will become part of your life. It doesn't mean you're exceptional, you need to tell people about Jesus.
If you don't tell people about Jesus, then don't winge about how our country is going. Church is a place we meet because we know Jesus. Church is not the most important thing. We come together because we have something in common. We must recognize that God has entrusted the ministry to you. Our life, who we are, matters.
We have to recognize we have a ministry. The church is the people of God. The building is a resource given by God, but the people are the church.
Next week- you are a conscript, not a volunteer.
We are to be ministers of the Word. Paul wasn't a volunteer, he was a conscript. Ministry is not a good idea, it's a way of life. Paul was compelled to live out his ministry.
We all have a ministry - the ministry of reconciliation. We are all called to be an Ambassador for God.