What a year! Things are much different from they were on January 1st and the changes are within me as much as they are in my circumstances. The process of transformation works from the inside out. The manifestation of eternal changes begin with us and produce fruit from us, ultimately multiplying beyond us.
My view of ministry changed drastically this year. I could have passed a quiz on it a year ago, but I didn’t know it with the same conviction that I do now. I now know that I know that I am a pastor; it’s my design. Granted, I’m not a typical pastor nor religious in the way many people consider that word. At the same time, I know that my heart is for people and my desire is to connect them to God.
At the end of last year, I was usually speaking weekly and sometimes more than that. Through a variety of circumstances, that changed in the first part of the year and I didn’t understand it. I had given up a law practice which I found satisfying and rewarding and things in ministry had been going well, so why was God putting me on the shelf?
The apparent demotion was the greatest promotion that could have ever happened to me. I started to see what ministry actually was. I started to value and love disciples over speaking from a platform. The speaking platform was a well intended effort to help people, but the Lord was showing me that I had started to value it too much.
During the coming months, I began connecting with people and multiplying with greater intentionality. The sloppiness of being engaged in lives that are less than perfect revealed the perfection of the life offered to us through the One that will redeem all things. Seeing Jesus that much more through the consistency of relationship despite the flaws of people gave context to the relatively fleeting connection from a platform.
I seriously considered going back into business or practicing law and the Lord made it clear that wasn’t His plan. I’ve started a new season and am now qualified to speak with regularity as I have put the platform in its proper context. The platform is the least effective mechanism we have for making disciples. The commission is to make disciples and it’s a joy to be a disciple maker.