Byron Spradlin

Artists In Ministry & Missions

Tag: Artists in Ministry & Mission (page 2 of 8)

A Blueprint for Itinerant (Traveling) Ministries

A Blueprint For Itinerant [Traveling] Ministries

Paul lays out … in Acts 14: 21-28 … for anyone who has a “traveling” ministry, a ministry with an itinerary outside one’s local congregation, that is very helpful.

Note the following seven (7) components in Paul’s Outline for traveling ministries:

        1. Connect … with people [implied]

        2. Declare … God’s reality and His accessibility through Jesus

        3. Win … people to Christ as you can

        4. Strengthen … the believers

        5. Give Permission … to potential ministry initiators [In Paul’s case he was formally appointing congregational leaders. You most likely will not do that. But you CAN pray for and encourage those who seem to be ready for ministry to get on with that ministry.]

        6. Repeat the process … of doing the above five actions in other places

        7. Report back … to your home church and other churches that know you, love you and are supporting you


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6 Foundation Stones of Ministry

Six habits, that if you do them, you WILL BE a minister. They are six basic elements of bottom-line ministry.

No matter what religious title or position you hold, or don’t hold, there are only six things that make you a MINISTER. If you are regularly doing these five things you ARE a minister (cf. 1 Pet 2:4-5, 9-10). If you ARE NOT regularly doing these six things—no matter what religious title or position you hold—you ARE NOT being a minister.

      1. You passionately pursue intimate companionship with Jesus throughout every day
        John 15:15

        Ex 33:11

      2. You regularly expect God to move supernaturally.
        Romans 1:16,19; 1 Corinthians 4:19

      3. You pray for and with people (expecting #2).
        1 Thessalonians 5:16; Philippians 4:6,71 John 5:14
        Romans 8:26; Ephesians 1:17-19; Ephesians 6:18;
        1 Timothy 2:1-4; Philemon 1:6; James 5:13-16

      4. You regularly care for people under assignment from Jesus.
        James 1:27; Galatians 5:13-14; Ephesians 4:7,11-12
        1 Corinthians 12:5-7; 1 Timothy 3:8-13

      5. You regularly guide people for help into truths of God’s Word, the Bible.
        2 Timothy 3:16,17; Hebrews 4:12

      6. You can . . . and regularly do share your faith with people… whether or not you have the spiritual gift of evangelism
        1 Corinthians 15:3-4; Acts 1:8; Acts 5:5-8, 34-38;
        1 Timothy 2:1-4; Revelation 14:6


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Business, Occupation, & Ministry. Do you know the difference? Part 2

Occupation: What is it?

1. Occupation Defined:

  • How you make your living
  • How you gain provision to live

2. Occupation Varies:

  • You may make your living several ways at the same time
  • You may work several jobs at the same time

3. God is the provider

  • GOD supplies your PROVISION
  • Deut. 8:18

4. Market-place Occupation is good because . . .

  • God expects you to work at something to earn provision
    2 Thessalonians 3:10
  • God is the provider of all wealth
    Deut 8:18 “It is God who is the creator of all wealth

-Your provision from a ‘market place occupation’ is a good thing because it comes from God [note the context of ‘Israel, and how God provided for them in the wilderness]

5. God expects everyone to have at least one occupation

  • 2 Thessalonians 3:10

6. In a fallen world, most often your occupation will NOT be your God-given CALLING–but you will always be & do your CALLING in the midst of your occupation if you are an integrated Christian and a balanced human being.

  • Paul’s example: 1 Cor. 9 & 2 Thess. 3

7. The biblical norm for carrying out ministry is being bi-vocational . . .

  • Earn your money in the market place and do your calling all around it: again note Paul. 1 Cor. 9 & 2 Thess. 3

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Business, Occupation, & Ministry. Do you know the difference? Part 1

Business: What is It?

1. Business Defined: selling products, performances and services for value in return
2. Business Goal: financial profit
3. Business Funding: profits & investors (who intend to make a profit on their investment)
4. Business Success Criteria: financial profit


5. Business ‘Goodness’ Criteria [Spradlin suggests]
that you serve God not Money— Matt 6:24 “No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.” (NIV)
that you love God not Money— 1 Tim 6:10 “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” (NIV)
that you make friends with ‘unrighteous money”— that is, you control it and use it for Godly agenda, rather than it controlling you and using you for world-system agenda.

Note—from this passage [an others] we see that:
Jesus says … Money has an “unrighteous” dynamic.
Jesus says … Believers must ‘make Friends” with it.


6. Business Power verses Kingdom Power
Where is Focal Point of Power in Business? MONEY
Where is Focal Point of Power in God’s Kingdom? FAITH-ing
Money—at it’s heart can be ‘evil’ (Jesus says), in that it is the focal point of power in the natural realm
Holy Spirit—at His heart is the heart of God. We must come under the control of the Holy Spirit (e.g. Ephesians 5: 18)—the focal point of power in the spiritual realm.
Only by allowing the Holy Spirit to become our power base, can we learn to take control [ “make friends with”] ‘unrighteous money.’


7. Ministry in Business? YES !!!
You can do Ministry in and through your business. But categorically speaking, Business is different than Ministry.
You can fail at Business (not make a profit) and still be successful at Ministry
It is very important to keep the technical distinction in focus about Business—selling things’ and it always involves ‘making money’ or it is NOT business. It is also absolutely important to hold in focus the technical definition of Ministry—serving God and His Kingdom purposes. These purposes are always—at the core of their essence—FREE. If you fail to make and hold clear and focused . . . the technical distinctions between business and ministry, you WILL continue to be confused. And confusion will bring you great frustration and the certainty of damaged business and damaged ministry as well.


Join me next time for: Occupation: What is it?

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Are you Called? What is your assignment from God?

Are you Called?  What is your assignment from God?

Calling: The central purpose of your life

God does not call people to the arts, per se.  He calls us to Himself and to live out the ways HE’s made us.  Then, as you are increasingly drawn to seek HIM the following biblical truths are essential to your understanding the issue of CALLING in general, and CLARIFYING your own calling in specific.


First know, the essence of Calling is this: God calls you to Himself. Period !
The Greek Term for CALLING used in the New Testament is KLESIS

KLESIS = Invitation

You have been INVITED into HIS EMBRACE !!
2 Peter 1:3
3 His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. NIV

1 Peter 5:10
10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. NIV


Second, concerning your CALLING…
God calls you to get comfortable with The WAYS He’s made you ! Getting comfortable with the WAYS HE’s MADE YOU … will take you far beyond money & fame. It will bring you to new and deeper levels of true fulfillment. Central to the reality HE’s made you in particular WAYS is to get comfortable with those WAYS.

Note these things about the WAYS HE’s Made You.
a) You are unique
Fearfully and wonderfully made – Ps 139:13-16
A poem; God’s masterpiece – Ephesians 2:10
You have at least four [4] unique WAYS he’s made you.

a unique Personality
a unique set of Talents
a unique set of Spiritual Gifts
a unique Sovereign History

b) You are gifted for PURPOSES God has assigned
Eph. 2:10 You are Created for good works, for purposes
Romans 12: 3-8 You are Gifted by God HIMSELF, to affect HIS purposes
1 Cor. 12: 1, 4-7 You have been Given spiritual gifts


Third, God calls you—gives you HIS Unique Assignments to serve HIM and HUMANITY—to assignments that flow out of the WAYS He’s made you.
So now, note again: your calling is found “where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”
(Frederick Buechner … referenced in Andy Crouch’s 2008 book, Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling; IVP Books; p. 263).
a) He will not assign you things for which He has not “graced” you!
b) You should not aspire the things for which you have no God-designed ability.
c) You will not achieve success in roles for which you do not have God-endowed aptitude, passion, pleasure.
d) You must realize that YOUR assignments will not look exactly like anyone elses assignments.
For example consider:
Rom 15:15-16
I have written you quite boldly on some points, as if to remind you of them again, because of the grace God gave me to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles with the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. [NIV]

So, do not compare yourself with others.
Rather just get on with your assignment


Summary:
God calls you to Himself . . . for intimate companionship.  Period !
God  calls you to get comfortable with the Ways He’s made you—personality, talents, gifts & sovereign history;
God calls you to assignments which flow out of the WAYS He’s made you

Frederick Buechner proposed that …
… your calling is found “where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” (from page 263 of Andy Crouch’s 2008 book, Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling; IVP Books)
In trying to discover our CALLING, Christian and writer, Andy Crouch, urges us to ask the question:
… “Where do you experience grace—divine multiplication that far exceeds your efforts.” (from page 257 of Andy Crouch’s 2009 book, Culture Making:  Recovering Our Creative Calling; IVP Books)
Then Crouch goes on to challenge us to ask a second question:
… “Where do we find our work and play bearing awe-inspiring fruit—and at the same time find ourselves able to identify with Christ on the cross?  That intersection is where we are called to dig into the dirt, cultivate and create.”  (Quoted from page 262 of Andy Crouch’s 2009 book, Culture Making:  Recovering Our Creative Calling; IVP Books)
Discovering your God-given CALLING assumes that you are pursuing God’s agenda for your life more than you are seeking your own agenda.


So in all this, remember: Philippians 2: 12-13

Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed- . . . -continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you (both) to will and to act according to his good purpose. [NIV]

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