• Our hope-filled future is bound up in sharing the story of Jesus, in discipling others, in bringing those disciples together into communities of believers, and in developing and releasing those believers to create other communities... till Jesus the King comes again!

“Worth so much more”

Recently I was reading the informational newsletter from the French Evangelical Federation and ran across an article by a friend, Etienne.  I thought his closing illustration was an excellent follow up on what I recently wrote in Thoughts Along the Journey (Feb 2010).  Let me try and “freely” translate what he wrote: “One of the elders where I pastured early in my ministry was a plumber-heating specialist.  While talking with him at one point I learned about how difficult it was to find interested young people to take up this line of work.  Seeing the surprised look on my face, he explained that many plumbers because of the pressing demands of work had decided to not take on any apprentices in their work.  The time the plumbers gained was significant in the short term, but now they were faced with a greater difficulty: the lack of adequately trained help to second them in their work and take over for them once they retired.  You don’t need to take a long time to come to the same conclusion when you look at our situation in ministry.  We as well are faced with the difficulty of adequately trained (or prepared) workers to continue the ministry.  And it stems from a lack of mentoring or coming alongside new workers as they enter into ministry.  The mission we promote and serve is worth so much more than that of the construction business.  It is imperative that we re-evaluate our priorities and take the time to come around and support/mentor those who are stepping forward to enter into ministry.”   

Etienne gives us another way of understanding what it would meand to develop “missional workers”:

  • Give of our precious time to develop and coach a certain number of new workers: MOBILIZE.
  • Involve them in ministry with us, recognizing that things may take longer to do, so that in the course of daily life and ministry, these workers would have opportunity to work out the wisdom and experience we would be sharing with them: TRAIN.
  • Freely let them go to start new WT church planting projects; and then, in turn, mobilize new workers towards the vision of seeing more disciples and more communities of believers: RELEASE. 

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