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Surge your Ministry

Lesson 3

Lesson 3

Surge your Ministry

Foreword

By now you should know the three basic ingredients of effective evangelism. Starting with 'Prayer and Obedience to God', they are:  - Plans  - Vehicle  - Tools …so, how's your personal strategy going in regard to these? It's now Chapter 3 (Lots of reading, eh?). I don't want to push you (that's between you and God), but I do want to remind you about the urgency.

Paul reminds us in 1 Corinthians 9:16 “Yet when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, for I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!” (NIV)

Time is running out. Our world has more people than ever with the population increasing like no other time in history. Distress, unrest and alienation from God abound…and getting worse. As I shared earlier, nothing brings this home more than seeing a close friend, who didn't know Jesus, die from cancer in his mid forties. This brought urgency home for me.

In what ways is God prompting you in regard to urgency?

Introduction:

SURGE your Ministry Hi, my name's Captain Andrew D. CARTER – I’d like to welcome you to the Third Lesson of Chocolate Evangelism™. Please Note: If you are a veteran, having already an established ministry, I would ask that you bear with me while I explain the basics. This will still be of value as you 'sift through' this first part, looking for more 'Gold Nuggets' to enhance or change aspects of your already established outreach. During our last Chapters here you’re going to learn the secret of 100% successful Evangelism Ministry so keep staying with me on this one. This week we’re going to talk about how to best “SURGE” your Evangelism.

By the end of this Lesson the “SURGE” will be hitting with ‘Boosts’ to your ministry. Specifically, you’ll have the following things in place…  

- A clear understanding of the best Branding for your specific Target Group.  

- A clear understanding of managing your Overall ministry resources for your specific Target Group. 

- A clear understanding of Overflowing your ministry for your specific Target Group.  

- A clear understanding of Standing Tall, being heard ‘above the noise’ of your specific Target Group.  - 

A clear understanding of what it means to be True to Scripture, so no mixed messages will be picked up by your specific Target Group.   - 

A clear understanding of what it means to effectively Share your ministry with the right partners in the right way for your specific Target Group.  

By the end of this third Chapter we’ll develop your ministry more fully with these very important enhancers. In short, more of your ministry is about to be taken to the next level in effectiveness. Praise God for what He is doing (or about to do) through you! Before we begin, let me start with a quick definition of a Boost…

To lift or raise by pushing from behind or below; to advance or aid by speaking well of; to increase; push up: to boost prices; an upward shove or push. (The Macquarie Dictionary) Interesting words here are 'lift', 'raise', 'advance', 'speaking well of' and 'increase'. There are others there also. Aren't those more key concepts we want to accomplish?

Only the best Chocolate Stands Out To my great joy, Chocolate is everywhere and easily obtainable. This is fantastic, unless you want others to try your Chocolate. Our Chocolate can be pushed down by all the rest. How can we make our Chocolate be seen above all the rest? How can we make it irresistible enough so others will come back for more and more? How can we stretch it out so we can have our ‘Chocolate’ and eat it too?

Surge your ministry with B.O.O.S.T.S.

B – Brand yourself or others will (often unhelpfully)

Branding has come a long way since only referring to marking cattle with their respective owner’s insigne. While still aiming for this uniqueness, it often aids to pass on vital information. As before, it gives the brand owner some control and power over those who come into contact with it. This is not always in a negative sense either. When someone saw branded cattle they immediately knew they were owned and probably by who. To recognise a brand was vital in these early days. Nothing has changed today.

You’re brand must be recognisable, yes, but it also must say something. You’re brand normally consists of pictures (generally in the form of a logo) or words. I prefer to have both as they can paint a good picture in a person’s mind. While pictures can convey messages, I believe words are more important. Words are far better at conveying a specific message that pictures which are far more prone to individual interpretation as against well chosen, clear meaning words.  

Branding should be either specifically who YOU ARE or something specifically YOU DO. It is often NOT the name of your organisation.

Let me be very clear about something... You’re Brand is for your Target Group, NOT you! Let me say this again just to make sure. You’re Brand is for your Target Group, NOT you!

Have you ever heard of a company called ‘Hungry Jacks’? It’s called that here in Australia, but I have seen the same company called ‘Burger King’ overseas. You most probably have seen their logo, but have you taken notice of their touchstone or catchphrase? Here in Australia (and probably elsewhere) it’s “The Burgers are better at Hungry Jacks”. That’s their branding; A Logo and a Touchstone (catchphrase). A few friends and I had an interesting discussion one evening. After Church, we decided to go out to have something to eat. It came down to two choices “Hungry Jacks” or “McDonald’s”. A lively discussion started on which burgers were better and which we love. Just by coincidence, McDonald's touchstone is "i'm lovin' it". Just an accident this discussion centred on their touchstones, right? Umm…not exactly.  

You see both Hungry Jack's and McDonalds taught us their well thought out, specific and relevant catchphrase or Brand. Their message (not left up to us to interpret) was what stuck in our minds. Every advertisement here in Australia for both these companies bombards you with these Brands. Do they leave it to us to make up our own minds in regard to their products? No. Do they teach us any old Brand? No. Why? They want their message to come across with the most effectiveness.

REMEMBER THE TITLE OF THIS SECTION? OK, then make sure you Brand yourself or others will.  

Likewise you must teach people your Brand so carefully, wisely and above all else prayerfully, choose it. You’re branding must be current, specific and relevant. It usually is something you do or an aspect of who you are. It is always aimed at your Target Group.

Let's see how God 'Brands' himself for our benefit. Please read the following verses in your Bible:

Exodus 3:14 Jehovah/Yahweh translated as "I am who I am" and "I will be who I will be."

Genesis 22: 14 Jehovah - jireh translated as "The-LORD-Will-Provide".

Exodus 15: 26 Jehovah - Rapha translated as "The Lord Who Heals"

…and what about Jesus? He called Himself (and others called Him) "Son of Man" and "Son of God" on many occasions throughout the Gospels and elsewhere.

Can you see why God, Jesus, McDonalds and Hungry Jacks Brand themselves? Obviously fast food stores don't rate with our Lord, but all want to get a specific message through to their respective Target Group.

Now what about us? Let me give a couple of personal examples.

I am a member of a Christian motorcycle chaplaincy called "BALAAM'S ASS". We chose our name from Numbers 22. We chose as our Branding 'Motorcycle Chaplaincy'. We felt this was very good branding as it is both something we are and something we do.

It was something our Target Group understood and was relevant to them. They knew a Chaplain was a 'religious person' because this culture (the Outlaw Motorcycle scene) has its roots in the US Army which contained Chaplains. There are still quite a lot of servicemen today as members. Certainly it is still a paramilitary group. Sadly, many also end up in prison. Prison Chaplains once again are a fundamental part of the system. Even their own Branding comes into play here. This group proudly displays the letters 'MC' meaning 'Motorcycle Club'. We took those same letters and replaced them with the words 'Motorcycle Chaplaincy'. This further connected us in a positive way.

Bottom line: Outlaw Bikers almost universally understand a Chaplain (or Chaplaincy) is a religious presence to a specific group from within that particular group. Good enough for us.

I'll be talking more on this in the following section 'Standing Tall'.

Let me give you another one.

As I mentioned before, I love Fantasy and Science Fiction. I also love creating ministry within things I am passionate about. I founded and lead an organisation called ‘ISAIAH 61’ which ministers to a group within this Culture, specifically Tabletop Roleplayers and Wargamers. What basically happens is we gather around a table either being brought into a story by a GamesMaster or have two opposing armies clash that is something like Chess, but using brightly coloured small figures, foam modelled terrain and more complicated rules. It’s great fun. My garage transforms into a tumultuous mix of yelling, laughter, dice rolling, pizza smells and lots more.

My wife just shakes her head and ‘retires’ inside 🙂 As well as our personal home games, there are lots of Roleplaying/Wargaming Conventions each year. These Conventions are similar to what I described above, but contain many, many more tables than just the one like in my garage. Large halls or schools are usually hired as venues. People come along to play games of many different genres, paying an entry fee to participate. The organisers beforehand ask for games to be submitted and run on the day or throughout the weekend. This usually results in many good quality entries. Ours (ISAIAH 61) was, and continues to be, one of these. We created a large continent called ‘Quelland’. Our fantasy setting was inspired by Narnia (C. S. Lewis) and Middle Earth (J. R. R. Tolkein). Both of these authors have been very influential in my own Christian life.

I know we have a quality game where players will enjoy themselves and want more. However, players actually have to come and play our game to experience it in the first place. So we developed this strategy which involved Branding. The Quelland setting was one of our main Vehicles, so we Branded ourselves ‘The Quelland Guys’. We had Embroidered Shirts made up with “ISAIAH 61; The Quelland Guys”. We also had personal cards and other paraphernalia with this Branding. We then implemented the next step by hand picking several games to attend. Some of our team ran our game while the rest of us attended these others in pairs. As we connected by playing in others games people couldn’t help but notice our Brand and ask what it meant. We gladly told them which resulted in many coming to play our games as well. Our games are still a popular choice at Conventions. Without this Branding, it would have been much harder to raise our profile.

Like I said earlier, I'll be talking more on this in the following section 'Standing Tall'. Let me add this warning. Never, ever abuse people. That is not God’s way and you can do much damage. We didn’t attend those games to ‘poach’ people. We chose them because we genuinely liked them and they fitted our ethos. We played them. We wholeheartedly supported their organisers. We promoted their games and even helped them run, not a problem. We entered their communities and they entered ours. Firm friendships developed. Guess what? Participation in these other games became another Vehicle of ISAIAH 61! I’m going to say it again. Never, ever abuse people.

O – Overall available ministry resources. Nothing ruins the taste of Chocolate more than a bellyache through eating in excess. Likewise, we must do one or two things well, NOT ten poorly. Remember back in Chapter One when you were identifying the Target Groups you wished to (or are) engaging? I asked you to find the top two – no more. The rest I asked you to put aside, only to be used if the initial ones didn’t work out as such. While we should have audacious Destinations (after all God is in control here), we must take into account our Resources, both in people and equipment. At the very least, it will let us see what God can do with so little through us.

We may have lots of resources in both people and equipment, or we may have only ourselves and not much else. That’s OK. The important thing is to use what we have wisely and in the most effective way. As God chooses, He will make up the difference. Remember the feeding of the 5,000 in Matthew 14: 13-21? Now that’s a difference made up!

We don’t need to overstretch ourselves or others. You and I can only do a little bit each, but when lots of us do our little bit, God’s huge plan is accomplished. We often forget we don’t have to (and can’t!) do God’s work for Him. Don’t forget Matthew 9:37-38. Remember, God will supply us with workers (Matthew 9:37-38) in HIS field, so constantly ask Him! Prayer is so important. Often, the need and opportunities are so great we feel like giving up. Its times like this we must remember only one thing: God expects us to only do what He has called us to do, nothing MORE and nothing LESS.

However, don’t aim too low, appropriately stretch yourself. I once heard this quote: “The problem is not so much we aim too high and miss, but we aim too low and hit”. A huge factor in this is actually knowing what resources you have and what you don’t have, especially in regard to people. Even Jesus said “Let your yes be yes and your no be no” (Matthew 5:37)

 ...for good reason. Getting people to commit either way can sometimes be hard, sadly. Be wise in how you use people. Non-committers, unreliable people or those who simply are not up to responsibilities given can devastate ministries. Some won’t commit to anything and promise little things to everyone. Avoid all these people like the plague! The key here is you must KNOW what is available to you. This information is vital to your Plans, Vehicles and Tools. I’ll talk more on this later in ‘Sharing your ministry in the right way’.

I ask for a specific commitment which is particular to the group I am outreaching to. There I go again; my starting point is my target group, NOT my resources. I MATCH my target group to my resources, not visa versa.

Let me give an example...

Our Motorcycle Chaplaincy focuses on outlaw motorcycle clubs to which most members commit themselves for life. In light of this ‘culture’ a long-term commitment is required by our chaplaincy. It would be counterproductive to have a large number of members changing every six months. So, we ask for a ten year (really lifetime) commitment to our chaplaincy. It will take a minimum of eighteen months to two years for one to become a full member with us. On top of that a Harley Davidson Motorcycle or equivalent is required.

But...

We also have several elderly ladies who commit to once a month (often more) to our Motorcycle Chaplaincy. They don’t go out with us much at all. They don’t even ride or own Harleys. However, they do a vital job within our organisation. A job which I believe is a key to our success. They pray for us and often while we are out! They are a resource we cannot do without.

Let me say it again, MATCH YOUR target group to your resources, not visa versa.

Don't forget an equally important concept. The concept of Training! While it's great to get experienced people you can often train inexperienced ones for effective ministry. I’ve said it many times before and it’s worth saying again. To effectively train people you need to know the ‘Big Picture’ of your ministry. In other words (here I go again) you need to know clearly your specific Plans, Vehicles and Tools. If you know this, then you know what resources you need. More importantly, you can specifically train people for the specific tasks needed. Vague generalist recruitment produces vague generalist ministers. This may not be so good in a lot of situations.   

Let me give an example. Your Church may have mid week Bible Study small groups like ours. My particular leader identified several key areas in which he wanted our group to operate. These included teaching God’s Word, a place to encourage one another through prayer and fellowship, a place we could invite our non-Christian friends to and a place for us to show hospitality to each other through a supper roster. There were some others. Because our Minister had obviously put thought into these intended Destinations, he could now think about what resources were needed to accomplish them.

He would need a Bible teacher, an Evangelist who equipps, some who do the work of an Evangelist, one who had a gift in leading Prayer, one who could organize the food (hospitality) and someone gifted in Pastoral Care. Sure, most of us can teach (even basic ‘sharing’ is this), most of us can help prepare meals, we all should pray and care for each other. Of course, one person may have several gifts as well. My point here is my Minister knew what he wanted our group (and other groups) to accomplish. In other words, he clearly had a Plan (outcomes wanted), put a good Vehicle in place (the group) and used Tools (specific studies, people’s specific gifts etc) to bring about specific Destinations.

Remember be clear on knowing your commitments and resources. Implement them wisely and, through the Holy Spirit, extraordinary things can be accomplished.

O – Overflowing your ministry. How can more ministries happen with little or no extra work on our behalf? There are things we can do that will achieve this. You do this through ‘leveraging’ resources, activities, practically anything you are ALREADY doing.

This is not about starting anything new. It is also not about radically spending more time and resources on your various activities. It is about looking at everything your doing and actively pursuing ways to improve (with little or no extra input) your Vehicles to achieve your Destinations. First of all closely know your Vehicles and what Destinations you want to achieve through them. I mean this. Know in minute detail each of your activities and their outcomes. Writing them all on a Whiteboard is often a good way to go. This is a great way to add new ideas simply by writing them up and rubbing off unneeded data. A computer could also be used, but not as effective without a projector in a group situation. Do whatever is comfortable for you as a group.

This brings me to my next point. Do this together, unless you are the only one involved. If this is the case, I would urge you to seek others. I think it is very rare God calls us to solo ministries. First of all prioritise your Vehicles or activities. Which really are accomplishing what you want the most? Which ones are achieving their Destinations effectively with the least effort? Which ones just simply stand out to you?

Take each Vehicle and expand out all the activities currently associated with it. Now add improvements by using the same resources, time or even other people. Look at each expanded step to see where more (with less) could be accomplished. Is a particular resource easy to find. If what you’re doing is good and the resources to accomplish it were abundant, it may be easy to simply bring in more and expand that way. On the other hand, you may have underused resources.

Let me give a couple of examples.

Remember the Pre-School example I gave back in Chapter 1? From the Culture I determined a monthly Newsletter would be the best Vehicle to connect the Church with the Pre-School. It was filled with good, target focused articles easily obtained from the Internet that added value to the Mum’s lives. I saw a way to increase that value with minimal effort on my part. What about placing selected offers from various local companies? It could include free samples, discounts, information and other targeted resources. Remember, the trick here is to have 'targeted' goodies. Unwanted ads would detract and hinder your 'Destinations'. Targeted, useful resources would be welcomed and even eagerly looked for as each issue became available. It may only require a few phone calls or personal enquiries as we do our shopping. Remember, this is all about getting extra impact for minimal work. The Newsletter now becomes more valuable to its readers and thereby raising the profile of Christ and the Church's articles within as Mother's share far beyond the actual pre-school community.

Another example would be our Motorcycle Chaplaincies' Newsletter. This Newsletter is similar to the above, but with a very different target group in mind. This actually never happened, but certainly could have if circumstances had been different. We talked it through over several meetings. We were already visiting Bikers in prison. We were already keeping up with things happening within the Biker culture outside. The Bikers in Prison valued how we 'kept them in touch' with some happenings in the Culture outside. It would be a simple matter to create a Newsletter filled with interesting targeted articles that we already were researching and familiar with. It was easy and cheap to post them or even hand them personally, during our visits. Some had become Christians or were interested in spiritual things, so we could have done two versions. One could have contained some targeted biblical teaching and encouragement, while the other, aimed at those less enthusiastic about faith issues, would have a few short, punchy targeted thoughts that hopefully they can ponder on. All in all we wanted to produce a Newsletter of value to our particular Target Audience. Again, this is all about getting extra impact for minimal work. The Newsletter now becomes more valuable to its readers and thereby raising the profile of Christ and our Chaplaincy within the Biker Community as people share far beyond the Prison and return to the Biker community outside.

What I'm saying here is look for ways of naturally expanding your current Vehicles.

Always be pro-active with your resources. Constantly look for ways to use them more effectively. Improve your Vehicles constantly, on purpose. In fact, look for Vehicles with the potential to be easily expanded. If it happens by 'accident' (God's intervention?) then praise Him and 'through Prayer and Obedience to God', get on with improving on purpose!

S – Standing Tall ‘Above the Noise’. People are bombarded everyday with lots of information and activity. How can we get their attention so lives can be changed through an encounter with the risen Lord Jesus Christ?

We need to be above the ‘Noise of Life’ so to speak. I believe we need to Stand Tall! Remember the above section on Branding? I mentioned briefly we must ‘teach’ people our Brand, just like businesses such as McDonalds and Hungry Jacks (Burger King) do. Much more importantly, as God does for us. Read those Bible verses again. They are Exodus 3:14; Genesis 22: 14 Exodus 15: 26. Learn some of God’s Brands for us.

Don’t forget Brands Jesus taught us about Himself: "Son of Man" and "Son of God" to name just a couple. You might want to write some down. Please do! It’s important how God Brands himself.

In saying this, never support bad Brands. This will definitely not help you to ‘Stand Tall’. Worse still, you may ‘Stand Tall’, but in a totally inappropriate way.

Let me give you an example. I was once at a Motorcycle event with several other Christian Clubs. We (as a large group) were referred to as the ‘Skypilots’ (a slang term for Christians here in Australia) by some non-Christians amongst us. I don’t believe they meant any harm, just more having a joke. That’s OK. However, one of our number (not one of my Chaplaincy members who know better) immediately smiled and said “Yes, that’s us. Skypilots heaven bound”.

I cringed.

I am definitely not a ‘Skypilot’ in that sense. I don’t wander the clouds serving an aloof God. If we were witnessing to airline pilots or similar it may be indeed a good Brand. We aren’t and it’s not a good Brand for us. I wish my brother had just been friendly and ignored the comment.

If I was approached directly with a comment such as this (as my Christian brother was here) I would have said something like “No, remember, we’re your Chaplains”.

Sometimes you simply can’t help being Branded unhelpfully. You have to run with the hand you’re dealt. However, you can use times like this to teach your Brand correctly or simply ignore it.

Never, ever, ever reinforce bad Branding. Let me say it again: Never, ever, ever reinforce bad Branding!

Previously, in Branding, I also gave two examples which I promised to expand further on. Let me do this now with the first example where I used the Brand ‘Motorcycle Chaplaincy’ and Chaplain.

As Vice President, New South Wales Chapter of BALAAM’S ASS I purposely created a ‘mindset’ in our own members. The mindset I mean here is one of Chaplains. We are Chaplains to the Outlaw Motorcycle scene. Whenever official correspondence went out to members within our club, it was addressed to Chaplain John Smith BAMC. In profiles on our website I referred to them (and myself) as a Chaplain. Every appropriate opportunity I pushed this concept to them. They got the message.

I then taught our Target Group. One of our major Vehicles is the visiting and support of Bikers within prison. As Vice President, one of my responsibilities was visiting Outlaw Motorcycle Clubs, keeping their Hierarchy informed of their individual members well being. While I couldn’t pass on direct messages and the like (for obvious security reasons) I could pass on regards and a general state of how they were. I often referred to the ‘Chaplain’ (our own Club member) that was responsible for the particular Correctional Centre where their member was and his ongoing support. They got the message.

Let me explain further.

At one secular event our Chaplaincy attended, a good number of those present were from another state so did not know us at all. It was actually a funeral, something that happens much more than we’d like. I was talking with a President that was a friend of mine when one of his interstate colleagues came up wondering which group I was from. Before I could even say a word, my friend leaned forward, put his arm around me and said “Mate, these are our Chaplains”. He got the message and now was teaching others himself.

We ‘Stood Tall’ by giving appropriate care (the Vehicle of Prison Support) and Branding ourselves as ‘Chaplains’.

OK, let’s have a look at the second one. This was where we Branded ourselves as ‘The Quelland Guys’ in regard to the Roleplaying/Wargaming ministry in the form of ISAIAH 61. You might remember I mentioned we taught our Brand through Embroidered Shirts, Personal Cards etc. People got the message.

However, we reinforced this through another act of service.

I mentioned previously that Roleplaying/Wargaming Conventions hired venues such as schools. After one such Convention, we wanted to thank the organizers for the hard work they had put in throughout the weekend so we could play some great games. We found them in one of the classrooms (a school had been hired to host the Convention) vacuuming, putting furniture back in place for classes and generally cleaning the place so they could get the deposit back and be able to hire the venue again next year. We all had a great weekend (and had certainly contributed to filling the rubbish bins etc.) so asked if we could help. Because of this the school was cleaned and put back in place in a fraction of the time of the previous year. Tired organizers thanked us, going home or down to the post-Convention drinks much earlier than expected. Word about “ISAIAH 61; The Quelland Guys” spread as we looked to help with any tasks we could at each Convention we attended. We would often bring a few vacuum cleaners from home. Look for ways to be proactive in service.

I would like to mention the two types of service. I call these “Client” and “Colleague”. The Client type usually requires some Training, along with Resources. Self esteem issues can be a pitfall here for people who receive this ministry. The Colleague type usually requires no Training and little Resources. Try to move people from ‘Client’ to ‘Colleague’ as much as you can.

Let me give a couple of examples of what I mean. In the previous example of helping clean up the school after the Convention the Organisers were very grateful for the help. There are no paid staff, all the work is done voluntary. The fees we pay go toward school rental, administrative costs and other similar things that are needed to make the Convention a success. We told grateful organizers we had a great weekend, certainly helped to make the mess and had no problem with helping as we really are looking forward to next year and wanted to do everything possible to make it happen again. We hopefully moved from ‘Client’ (helping them achieve their own personal Destinations) to ‘Colleague’ (helping us all achieve a common Destination).

I know of a gentleman in our church who mows elderly folk’s lawns as a ministry and service. I remember him one day saying to a group of us “I have to go back each time to mow this lady’s lawn as she’s the only one that can make coffee to perfection”. This lady, being present at the time, smiled from ear to ear. He was doing the same, moving her from ‘Client’ to ‘Colleague’. I’m not even sure he liked the coffee. It didn’t matter.

What I’m saying here is be careful of putting people in a position where they owe you and feel uncomfortable. Do everything possible to avoid that (like in the examples), but still do something that is suitable, which may be even just accepting their thanks. Be proactive and look for appropriate acts of service and apply a good dose of Branding.

Don’t be pompous, condescending or ‘holier than thou’. A servant heart comes from a genuine love (1 Corinthians 13). As this love is felt, those outside the Kingdom will see a difference that stands out. A difference that stands above all the other good things happening. A difference that ‘Stands Tall’.

T – True to Scripture. I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I believe the Bible is the primary way God uses to teach us about him and prepare us for eternity. I certainly believe God uses many things to reveal Himself, however the Bible is the main source for me.

Timothy puts it in a nutshell when he wrote “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work (2 Timothy 3: 16-17 New International Version).

God is who He is. He didn’t ask me and He didn’t ask you who we wanted Him to be. In fact when Moses pushed God for a name he was told “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: 'I AM has sent me to you.'”

God makes it pretty clear here. He will reveal Himself to us. That’s the whole key to this. It starts and finishes with God, not us. We can believe what we like. It has no bearing on who God is. God is who He is, period.

It really is silly getting people to believe in something that is false. That’s called a placebo effect. The outcome may be good here in medical terms and sometimes elsewhere, but getting people to believe in a false God is never good. In fact that really does give satisfaction to the false god. His name is Satan. John 8: 44-45 records Jesus’ words “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me!”

Listen to the truth Jesus’ teaches and believe. You’ll never convince others of something you’re not convinced of yourself. Yes, and that means in practice. You must act on your belief. A major part of this is putting time aside on a regular basis to read God’s word. It also means putting time aside to meet with others to do the same. Most importantly it means doing and acting on what you read in God's Word. 

Have a hunger for God’s word. I see soccer coaches yelling at players to be ‘Hungry for the Ball’. In other words, be proactive in getting it!

Those who God calls to do the 'work of an Evangelist' bring His truth to an unbelieving world. We must model what we know about God and we know He wants us to read his word. Psalm 119:105 reminds us “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path”. I remember years ago having a BSA Motorcycle with a six volt electrical system. We had a nickname for the wiring system. It use to be known as “Lucas Electrics, Prince of Darkness”. Now of course this didn’t mean the bike was Satan. What it did mean was the lights were so ineffectual, so dim that you couldn’t see a thing. I tell you, it was no fun even coming up our dodgy driveway in the dark. If we don’t know God’s Word we are stumbling around in the dark, ripe for accident after accident. We’ll end up doing more harm than good.

It may be good for you to do a formal course. There are many from the very basic to a Doctorate. I’m not saying here you need formal qualifications before you can share. That would be a huge mistake. You can really only share what you have experienced personally. So when you have a relationship with God yourself, you are fully capable of sharing that with others.(1Peter 3: 15) In fact the ‘Woman at the well’s testimony’ brought many of her people to Jesus, and she had only known him for a few minutes before sharing what had happened to her! (John 4:39-42). Don’t let lack of formal (or any) qualifications stop you from sharing in any way. Share what you’ve experienced.

I’m not taking anything away from this when I say God himself expects us to grow as our relationship with Him matures over time. We also need to share Truth. Sometimes how we feel may be true to us, but not necessarily the truth. God’s word will give us the Truth. Time and time again in Scripture, I see God’s people pouring out their hearts to him. We often feel alone like Elijah did in 1 Kings 19: 9-18, but in reality he wasn’t. We can take a sure hope as we read recorded history like this. The Truth is Elijah wasn’t alone and neither are we. We know this because God has revealed it through His word. There are many other examples in Scripture. Despite how we feel, God’s word is the standard.

Of course, as Evangelists and those who do the work of an Evangelist we must know that it is True. Sadly many popular writers come up with historically unfounded rubbish about Jesus and the history books contained within the Bible. Gullible people believe it in droves. Even the History Channel (which I love by the way) has some programs which are just plain wrong. This is a big subject in itself, but let me encourage you to look at the myriad of books, DVD’s etc. that give clear evidence of verifiable historical evidence that the Bible’s history books and the life and teachings of Jesus contained within are accurate and True. Not True to me, actually absolute Truth in recorded actual events and teaching. As to the rest of the books (prophetic, wisdom, letters, poetry etc.), they must be read as the author intended, that is God communicating His Truth through these writings in a different context. 

Paul himself warned us about teaching a false Gospel, or in other words something that is simply NOT True. Galatians 1: 6-9 says “I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let them be under God’s curse! As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God’s curse!”

Let me summarize this for you. Just like in a court of law, Evangelists of Jesus take this…

Oath: I swear by Almighty God that the evidence I shall give shall be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Affirmation: I do solemnly and sincerely and truly declare and affirm that the evidence I shall give shall be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Promise: I promise before Almighty God that the evidence which I shall give shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

In other words, shall be Bible based, wholly Bible based and nothing but Bible based.

S – Sharing your ministry in the right way. You gain so much by sharing and partnering with other groups. Even non-Christian people and organizations can help you reach your Destinations. However make sure you partner with the RIGHT groups or people. By right I mean right for you and your particular ministry. This really sums up what I am saying here.

The clue here is mutual benefit and non hindrance. It certainly is not good to partner with anybody who will compromise what you are trying to achieve. Conversely, why would anybody want to help if no benefits come their way? Of course it’s always good to help others expecting nothing in return. I’m not saying ignore this. What I am saying is look out for others welfare and you may well be amazed at what you get back in return.

Yes, you can use those outside the Kingdom to achieve your Destinations. There are many examples in Scripture of God using those outside His Kingdom to bring about His purposes. An example which comes to my mind is Satan in the Old Testament book of Job.

 ...However I would be cautious if you’re going to recruit Satan lol.

Remember never compromise the ministry by involving those outside the Kingdom in key Gospel positions. They can be involved in many areas, but don’t let it be to the detriment of the Gospel. Many Christian organizations have become secular in this way. Sometimes this is good as welfare (or something else) may still be able to continue, but let it be intentional. Ministry can still happen within non-Christian circles. Let me say this again, everything should be done (through Pray and Obedience to God) intentionally. Don’t wake up one morning and find wrong people in key positions.

In some ways it’s similar even for our Brothers and Sisters. As I said earlier, you need the right people in the right positions. Yes, this still applies to God’s chosen! A very godly person in the wrong position can do untold damage and just be a hindrance to achieving your Destinations.  

Remember, avoid non-committers like the plague! Certainly do not give them key positions or tasks. At best let them turn up as they may and allocate tasks then. I would council against making them members of your organisation as trouble will almost always follow. Remember last Chapter's ‘Hop over Pitfalls’? Well, appointing people like this is definitely one to ‘Hop over’. Even God says ‘Do not lay on hands hastily’ (1 Timothy 5:22)

All of the above hinges on the vital concept of knowing your SPECIFIC Plans, Vehicles and Tools. If you know this, you will know what skills you need to have available to achieve your Destinations. You can be proactive in looking for the RIGHT people to fill these roles.

Let me give one example. As I mentioned earlier, I am a member of BALAAM’S ASS Motorcycle Chaplaincy. We have a ministry to Bikers, especially those in Prison. At times, we have been approached (both by Bikers and non-Bikers) to pursue general ministry with any Prisoners. We have politely stuck to our policy of focusing on Bikers.

If somebody wants to expand this we usually direct them to organisations such as Prison Fellowship or KAIROS. This has made some angry with us, but so be it. To change our focus would be counterproductive to the sub-culture we minister within. Some we have to simply SEND AWAY, very much with our blessing, to serve elsewhere. Yes, we send good people away. You should too, if you decide they are not a good fit.

How do you know what your ‘good fit’ is? I said it before and I’ll say it again. It’s because you have a clear understanding of your SPECIFIC Plans, Vehicles and Tools. Don’t ever forget these all come from Prayer and Obedience to God.

Rejoice with those who say ‘No’. Bless them as they go on their way. Praise God for their decisiveness and pray that God will send others like them with a ‘Yes’ commitment. Even those who can commit to only a short time may still be very valuable. The key here is you KNOW what is available to you. Maybe’s, good intentions, genuine interest are of little use if their commitment is vague.

Never be ashamed of partnering with other like minded organizations or individuals. I mentioned this earlier in “Overflowing your ministry”. What I want to add here is the need to be wise in who this is.    

Your next step is to take action!

By now you should know the three basic ingredients of effective evangelism. Starting with 'Prayer and Obedience to God', they are:  - Plans  - Vehicle  - Tools …so, how's your personal strategy going in regard to these? It's now Chapter 3 (Lots of reading, eh?).

 I don't want to push you (that's between you and God), but I do want to remind you about the urgency.

Paul reminds us in 1 Corinthians 9:16 “Yet when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, for I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!” (NIV)

Time is running out. Our world has more people than ever with the population increasing like no other time in history. Distress, unrest and alienation from God abound…and getting worse. As I shared earlier, nothing brings this home more than seeing a close friend, who didn't know Jesus, die from cancer in his mid forties. This brought urgency home for me.

In what ways is God prompting you in regard to urgency?

I hope you’ve learned some new things, so now, just like before, it’s homework time! Feel those high school days again! Go ahead and complete these steps so that you have the foundation in place for the final Chapter’s lesson. Next you’ll discover how to effectively respond, recruit and evaluate. You’ll also get Mentors, Coaches and relate well to those in authority. You’ll be able to identify Evangelists and maybe even plant a new community of faith. You’ll see again the true meaning of being a Disciple. Stand by for the home run. It will soon be time to finally "SHOW" your ministry!

Here are the things you need to have accomplished to complete the Third Chapter’s action steps for setting up your own God given Evangelism Ministry.  

- Choose one or more Ministries and identify the above concepts (briefly) within them. Treat this as a learning experience even if you are an advanced user.

 - List several 'Resources' you have. Looking at and identifying concepts in other Ministries is definitely one, so put it down.

 - List ways you can apply one of the above to your ministry.  

- Advanced Users: As above, with particular attention being paid to how each of these concepts is developing in your established ministry.

How can these be further advanced to enhance established ministries? 

Here I go again!

Don’t forget prayer and obedience to God as you complete these tasks. Pray, Pray and Pray again, especially about what God has in store for you as you read and apply this Lesson. Now (don't skip this step!) be still and actively look for answers from God. Get ready for the next Chapter as you at last "SHOW" your Ministry!

Is there something you need more explanation or information on? Please tell me here below. I really do want to help in your 100% successful ministry God has called you to do. God bless,                                                                                                                               Captain Andrew D. CARTER CEO, Chocolate Evangelism™

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