Tuesday, September 06, 2011

An inside look at STRETCH-Structuring Your Ministry For Growth

Last week we started asking people to twitter about STRETCH to win a copy so here's my six winners so far...

@kodypage
@mikebrooks
@lizwalker
@revjvincent
@claytonpoland
@letthemcome1014

Email me your snail mail address at theClub@jimwideman.com
and we'll send it out!

I'm still giving out a free book everyday until September 15th just for tweeting, so have at it...

@jimwideman is giving away a copy of his latest book STRETCH http://bit.ly/eUSGyx #kidmin #leadership  #jimwideman

When you dream about the future of your ministry, what do you see? Do you imagine a skyscraper, solid and secure reaching new heights, or a shack, shaky and unstable just hoping to make it another day? That’s probably a dumb question to ask. No one hopes to have a ministry that can fall apart at any moment. We all strive to do the very best we can to accomplish God’s purposes for the children He has put in our care. So, what are you doing now to prepare for that ministry God has called you to?
The key to any building is its foundation. Just because you want to build a five-story building, doesn’t mean you can. If you don’t have the right foundation, there’s no way you’ll be able to build what you want to build. You usually don’t notice the foundation of a building when you look at it. You see the outside—the color, the architecture, the bricks, or the wood. Ministry is the same way. A lot of times people will just look at the outward things without really understanding there is a whole lot that happens in the foundation that either causes you to see your dreams come true or causes you to come up short.
Do you remember the story from the Bible of the wise man and the foolish man? You know, the one you’ve heard your whole life and have taught to kids in children’s church. Let’s look at that familiar story in Matthew 7:24-29. The story goes that the first guy didn’t build his house on a rock; he built it on the sand, and when the winds and the waters and the floods came, his house wasn’t able to handle it. He didn’t build on a good foundation.
Matthew 7:25 tells us about the wise man’s house. “The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.” This guy did it right. He took the time to build on a foundation that was solid and secure. As time passed and as challenging times came, his house stood tall.
What does this story have to do with children’s ministry (other than the song that you are probably singing in your head right now)? The right foundation makes a difference in what we build for God. The type of foundation determines what you’re able to build. In many ways, the future of your ministry depends on the foundation you are building right now.
In children’s ministry, that foundation is the structure you create. Often, ministers think they can create children’s ministry success by the d├ęcor of their building or their cool check-in system or their cutting-edge programming. All of that is good, but it won’t last. If that is what you are building your ministry on, you are building it on sand. When the right storm blows up, your ministry is at risk of crashing down. Or even worse, it might not ever get built in the first place. 
When Jesus started His earthly ministry, the very first thing He did was establish structure. He immediately chose twelve men whom we call the disciples. The first thing Jesus did was use the twelve to establish structure and build something of value. He proves you can’t do the workload by yourself. And if the Son of God needed help, you and I need tons of it.
More to come...


If you desire to see growth in your own personal spiritual life and the life of your ministry, then order a copy today.

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