I’m posting this week from California at Saddleback Church’s Global PEACE Conference. I’m here with Brian Crook, our Director of Missions at Nativity. It’s been an inspiring and thought-provoking experience. Pastor Rick Warren had the vision of bringing together pastors from countries around the world to share ideas and learn from one another how to better be the hands and feet of Jesus across the globe, beginning with the local church. We were lucky enough to be included in a group of 100 of the most talented and diverse churches in the world.
I want to share with you some of what we’ve been learning from Rick and his Saddleback team. I know he loves to share his ideas, but I do want to rightly credit these ideas to them and then encourage you to check out more of Saddleback’s resources.
We spent some time reflecting on Isaiah chapter 42, about an ideal Servant of the Lord. Isaiah’s vision of servant leadership and ministry was fulfilled in the person of Jesus. All of our ministry must be defined and inspired by the ministry values of Jesus. Here are the values we talked about in one of our recent sessions. As you read through them, keep in mind your own church’s ministry and see how closely aligned your values are with those of Jesus.
The Ministry Values of Jesus
1. We minister with authority
Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased. Upon him I have put my spirit (v 1)
2. We fight for equality
He shall bring forth justice to the nations (v 1b)
3. We speak with civility
He will not cry out, nor shout, nor make his voice heard in the street (v 2)
4. We serve with charity
A bruised reed he will not break, and a dimly burning wick he will not quench. He will faithfully bring forth justice (v 3)
5. We teach with tenacity
He will not grow dim or be bruised until he establishes justice on the earth; the coastlands will wait for his teaching (v 4)
6. We live with credibility
I formed you, and set you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations (v 6)
7. We trust the Father for security
I have grasped you by the hand (v 6)
8. We lead with authenticity
To open the eyes of the blind, to bring out prisoners from confinement (v 7)
9. We grow through creativity
The earlier things have come to pass, new ones I now declare; Before they spring forth I announce them to you (v 9)