Have you ever stopped to consider what you value in ministry? Ministry is about others, and your values should therefore be others focussed. Sometimes ministers find that subconsciously they have self focussed ministry values, aimed to make themselves sucessful. That is, they serve others, so that they look good, and there are many ways and shapes of that.
When serving yourself is a deep seated value, then things like pride, competition, distrust and other things can make their way into our lives much more easily. Fortunately there is grace for such things, and recognizing them goes a long way to solving them.
For more than ten years, Peace as a ministry has used the acronym STIHL as indicative of our values, and how we approach relationships with others in the Body of Christ, and especially in ministry. The acronym represents as follows:
S Serve: It is our heart to serve others in the Body of Christ, and we seek to make them successfull wherever we can. Sometimes we encounter ministers who treat us with suspicion, thinking that we could not possibly want to serve them. They wonder what our “real motive” is, yet serving one another is what the Kingdom of God is made for.
T Teach: Teaching is one of the ways in which we serve, and however we can assist other ministers by teaching them, or their people, we will do so.
I Impart: Spirital growth and change doesn’t come from teaching alone, but grace is imparted as the Lord works among us. Just as Paul desired to impart a spiritual gift to those in Rome, so we also desire to pray for, and impart to others.
H Honour: God is not the only one we should honour, but in Christ we should honour one another. And we should honour the Christ who dwells in each other. Each minister, or church has something to contribute, and we should recognize that, and strive to avoid competition, pride and things which bring dishonour.
L Love: We are not here for ourselves, we are here for others. Christ came for others. How can we as Peace Apostolic Ministries love you, your work, and your people? The first thing is getting to know each other. Love is a component of relationship. The Body of Christ is a temple of living stones, made of such relationships.
When Peace sends ministers, or sometimes our own people to other places, we always go with a conscious desire to love, honour and serve others, and we often are able to do so through teaching, prayer and impartation, as well as other practical ways too.