Here’s a fact about most individuals involved in ministry … when we leave our service, we are known for critiquing and analyzing every little detail about the service. Am I right? This is true for the person who ministers to the adults by preaching a sermon in the main auditorium, the music pastor who stands before the congregation leading people into God’s presence, the youth pastor who …. I could go on and on. This is true for each and every one of us. We want to determine whether we were a success or failure.
How do you determine the success or failure of your ministry? Children’s worker, is your definition of success determined by your “surviving” another week? Youth Pastor, is it determined by whether or not parents were lined up after your service to offer suggestions for what you need to do to get the ministry back on track? Nursery worker, is success determined by whether or not all of your volunteers showed up? How do you differentiate between success and failure?
This week, allow me to share a powerful quote from one of my all time heroes, Smith Wigglesworth. Wiggleworth’s wisdom about success/failure should be shared with EVERYONE working in the ministry. The quote is taken from a book that has made a huge impact in my walk in the Spirit, The Complete Smith Wigglesworth.
“I see everything a failure except that which is done in the Spirit. But as you live in the Spirit, you move, act, eat, drink, and do everything to the glory of God. Our message is always this, “Be filled with the Spirit”. This is God’s place for you, and it is as far above the natural life as the heavens are above the earth. Yield yourselves for God to fill.”
Children’s worker, it isn’t the “WOW” factor or the kid’s visible reaction to your ministry that determines whether or not your message was a success. Youth worker, it isn’t the incredible band that you have and cool, relevant message that you preach that determines the success of your service. Senior Pastor, it isn’t the accolades or the lack of negative emails that you receive after you preach that determines whether the service was a glowing success or dismal failure. The litmus test, the ONLY accurate indicator is …. was it done “in the Spirit”. Anything less than that is a total waste of time and energy. But, with the Spirit, eternity is impacted, lives are changed, and God’s “well done thou good and faithful servant” is being broadcast all over heaven. I don’t know about you, but that’s good enough for me!