The most critical component of ministry

Passion for GodThe longer I’m involved in vocational ministry, the more I’m convinced that ministry is should never be done from a Bible college or seminary education. This kind of ministry tends to focus on what you do, a task oriented to-do list of pulling off events, Bible studies and meetings. Instead, ministry should always be done out of a passion for God, a desire to know Him more intimately every day. Not just as desire to know more about God, but a deep craving to spend unrestricted time with Him. This kind of ministry focuses on who you are, a yearning for God that is extremely contagious and caught by those around you, not taught from a text book you read once.

Posted on June 26, 2007

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  • I agree and add that neither should Bible college or seminary education be done from a Bible college or seminary education.

    As one who plans on an entire life in the academy, I question education methods that neglect whole persons, whole communities, and individual/corporate relationship with God. Bible/Seminary Education is a ministry and should also be done from a passion for God. This may step on toes, but if an administrator/professor ministers (primarily) from something other than a passion for God, they ought to find another segment of the academy.

    I thank God for those professors who have taught with their life as much (or more than) they have with their words.

    Now if I could only follow their example more consistently…

  • Yeah, Tim you are right.

    Somebody said: “Your Time for God, does not replace the Time withGod”.

  • That, my friend, is a sweeping statement that isn't fair to those of us who recieved an education that wasn't task oriented…

  • Jon

    Wow. I am a little surprised at your statements. I doubt you meant to make that much of a statement. I didn't go to college. I went through an internship process. But I am now going to go back to school to read a text book once.

    I agree, it is so important to be walking with God. Your ministry will be a direct reflection of your personal walk. If you don't pray, your students wont pray. If you don't reach out to unsaved people, your students wont. You have to focus on God.

    However, you can be so spiritually focused that you are no earthly good. You worship God with excellence and you run a youth ministry with excellence. The longer I am in youth ministry the more I figure out that I need to be organized. To-do list for events makes me able to get work done well and keeps us focused.

    I see to many youth pastors say the "focus on the spiritual" but in reality just use that as an excuse to do nothing with excellence.

    You have to have balance.

    Sorry to rant. Again, you probably meant nothing and my mind just went crazy.

    I enjoy your blog. Thanks for all the work you put into it.

  • Tim

    Hey guys! Yeah, you're right, those are pretty sweeping statements. Re-reading this now a week after I originally wrote it, it's too accusatory. I attended both Bible college and seminary, so I'm obviously not against these institutions at all. They were both very beneficial and have impacted my ministry greatly. My heart in this post is exactly what Schrotty said, “Your Time for God, does not replace the time with God.” Thanks, Schrotty!

  • agreed. for me, my 10 years as an employee fro costco did more practical training for ministry than my years in bible college. my years in bc were valuable, but to be honest, i remember more of the weekend ministry opps and spring breaks spent doing ministry than anything in class. costco does an incredible job of instilling in their employees the importance of excellence and repping costco the right way. never learned that in any school :)

    nice pithy post

  • I think this is a great post. I am glad that you were challenged on your post because that shows that people are reading and thinking about your post, verses reading and agreeing with everything you write. I would agree that Bible College is important (not only because I married to the Presidents daughter) but because of theology that is taught. I think when we approach ministry we must keep in mind all of the things we learn in College or Seminary but not base our ministry upon what we learned. The ministry needs to be founded on Gods word and what He is leading you to do. There have been many times in my short 2 year period that I have caught myself doing ministry (JOB based) instead of loving and living ministry. Task list are important, as is delegation, and developing yourself into a better leader and growing in understanding (by taking more class) but these things cant replace our love and passion to know Christ and become more like Him. Students want a ministry that is authentic and that start with being connected to the source of Ministry before our task lists. Great post and good discussion.

  • You are correct. But BOTH doesn't hurt.. as it gives ideas for long term ministry.. Some people tend to run out of ideas or how to get them. A blessed ministry is a must !

    G-Ma B

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