Posts Tagged ‘ministry’

The Absolute Best Form of Communication

Friday, January 22nd, 2010
Resources

By Stephen Johns

Being a Christian you have this amazing gift of being able to interact with the Most High God! God is in our lives in every way possible directing our paths. Amazing, and what amazes me further is the fact that we get to speak with our Creator on a continual basis, day by day, hour by hour, even down to the second if we choose so. This act is called prayer.

I am asked quite frequently by Christians, “How do I pray?” I believe there are many ways to pray, but I would like to discuss one which I believe to be the most natural way to pray.

First, I want you to imagine that you are at your childhood home. You get up in the morning as you do everyday and you can smell breakfast cooking and your Mom singing in the kitchen. Your Dad is drinking coffee in the kitchen. You walk downstairs and there is evidence of them being all around you but you barely acknowledge them. Time passes through the day. You have lunch, maybe saying hi and thanking your parents for the food exactly as you did the day before. More time passes as you do your chores. Soon the afternoon passes with no interaction. It’s night time, you sit for dinner and again possibly saying thanks for the food. Night has fallen and you watch a T.V. show and go to bed. Just before you retire for the evening you tell your parents, “How thou art great and thou art wonderful parents” and as you are speaking you gently fall asleep in mid-sentence!

Sound a little strange? As abundant as your parents are in your life you barely communicate with them and when you do, you use strange words unlike your typical rhetoric through the day!? Yet this is how God is often treated by us. Avoided most of the day and spoken to with ready made cookie cutter prayers.

There are many reasons that we may not pursue God in prayer more often. One reason is that we may feel vain in thinking that we can actually speak to the “Great I Am” without using specific times like dinner, and bedtime, and using formidable words like thou and thee. However, this is not true.

One of my favorite names for God is Abba or as it could break down, “Daddy – a loving and trusting Father.” And He wants us to come to him on a continual basis. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 says to, “Pray without ceasing.” If it is suggested that I can pray without ceasing, then every second must be suitable for prayer. There would not be a specific time or place that would be more suitable for prayer, meaning our communication lines are wide open and our Father is ready to hear us any moment through the day.

Understand and recognize that your “Heavenly Daddy” is with you never leaving 24/7. He is there in the good and the bad, thick and thin and He wants you to tell Him about it in your own words, crying out if need be! So how do you pray? Start by just opening your mouth and your heart and in your own words – pray.

For more on how you can participate in personal growth and help improve the lives of the unfortunate and downtrodden please contact us at the web-site below.
http://www.mylifechange.org

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Stephen_Johns
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Daily Devotion – Your Everyday Ministry

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010

By Edwin Joseph Sotomango Villagomez

How do you define a ministry? Is it about supporting every church activity and gathering? Or joining the music team? Or is it about being active in church evangelism programs? etc…

As I analyze the term “Ministry”, it seems that there will be 2 types:

  1. General Ministry – this is the type of ministry where most people get joined with. Just like what the term implies, this is intended for the general public who is interested. For example, music team, ushering team, pastor support team, evangelism team and many more.
  2. Personal Ministry – this is not about any other people, its all about you. We all have our own calling, own destiny to live in, own skill to use and develop, and own life to dedicate for God.

God has a very unique plan for all of us. Hard to imagine and think of but easy to know especially if we will truly seek God.

“For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function,so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.”
Romans 12:3-8

It clearly states that we all have our own spiritual gifts to nurture and use everyday. We may have different capabilities but what matters most is that we all use it to fulfill God’s plan in our lives.

Daily Devotion Conclusion:

God will judge us not based from all those things we did but on those things we obeyed. If you still don’t know yet your spiritual gift, try seeking God because it will be the only solution.

You may start by sharing His marvelous Word. Believe me, we are all called to share the Gospel. It is a fact that you should consider.

Edwin Joseph is a former self help and personal development writer which is now focused on writing christian devotionals which aims to share the Word of God online.

To read daily devotionals, visit http://www.InstantDevotion.com
Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/instantdevotion

Bible Study: The Workers Are Few

Friday, November 6th, 2009

By Angela Mwema

Mathew 9:35-37

When Jesus was preaching the word to the people, many came from all parts of the world to see him and hear from him. Most expected for God to move in there lives and break them free from the bondage that suppressed them. At one time, he looked at them and saw what they had to go through to just come and be ministered to by him. Some even fainted from hunger. He was moved with compassion for them and declared that the harvest was plenteous but the workers were few. He said, “Pray you therefore the Lord of the Harvest send forth laborers into the harvest.”

Jesus Our Lord

Jesus Our Lord

Today, the same situation is being experienced all over the world. People are hungry and thirsty for God. Some cannot even afford to own the Bible. Some are too poor to afford any real investment in the true and living word. You are needed in reaching out to these people. God wants you to go to them for you can afford it. As Christians, we are all called to advance the word of God in one way or another.

It’s your duty to know how you are supposed to do this. Have you been called to minister the word or assist in the ministration? Note that everything and everybody is very important in the work of God. Whatever way God wants you to assist in taking the gospel to the four corners of the earth, make sure you obey him for you will never find personal gratification if you are not in his will. Realize that spreading the Gospel is number one priority to God. It should be your top priority too.

Angela Mwema is a messenger to the world with the true and living word of God. Please visit her site for more spiritual nourishment. This is http://angiepages.com/2009/08/24/everything-we-do-as-youths-will-come-back-to-us/.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Angela_Mwema
http://EzineArticles.com/?The-Workers-Are-Few&id=2908101

The Worship Leader is a Spiritual Leader

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

This article is for worship leaders. And as such, I believe it needs to focus on leadership skills. It is my intent to do this from a Biblical perspective. The only prerequisite for leadership is you must have somebody follow you. I can be just one person or thousands. The definition is still the same – A leader must have someone following them.

Understand That You are a Spiritual Leader

But there is more to leadership than having people follow you. In the Body of Christ you are a not just a leader. You are a Spiritual Leader. Your leadership skills must be in alignment with spiritual ideals. (more…)

Who is the audience you serve?

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

Most worship leaders are talented artists. And there is a certain level of performance that goes into the music. Now the title of this article may raise some eyebrows. Worship leader are not suppose to be entertainers. Or are they? I believe that there needs to be a balance and perspective when we examine who the real audience is. This may come as a surprise to you, but as a worship leader you need to entertain the people you serve. Let me explain. When I say to entertain, what I mean is to make everyone at ease a possible. The word entertain can also be understood as hospitality. Hospitality is a spiritual gift. To exercise this gift means that you need to entertain. Just like you are the host at a dinner party. You entertain your guests. Here is the first person to consider. (more…)

Worship Resources and Minstries

Monday, October 12th, 2009

Worship and Church Music
This web site is developed and maintained by the Rev. Larry D. Ellis, Organist and Director of Music of St. Gabriel the Archangel Episcopal Church, Cherry Hills Village, Colorado, USA. His goal is to primarily serve the music ministry needs of the liturgical church musician as well as be a resource for non-liturgical musicians who wish to expand their knowledge and breadth to include some of the historical liturgical expressions of worship in their churches.

Worship is a Way of Life
The purpose of this ministry is to encourage the world in worship as a way of life. It features worship leader’s resource for fresh, new praise and worship music.

Whole Hearted Worship
Worship resource for you and your group. WholeHearted Worship is built around the philosophy that it’s better to help people worship than to try to do worship for people.  Free songs, Worship school and more

Experiencing Worship
ExperiencingWorship.com is a complete worship resource for the worshiper and worship leader. Founded by Stephen M. Newman, author of “Experiencing Worship – A Study of Biblical Worship”, ExperiencingWorship.com is the Internet’s one stop shop for worship related information.  ExperiencingWorship.com provides content for worship leaders and lay people alike. We have a large selection of articles to suit just about everyone. Our message boards provide a place for people to discuss the various aspects of worship and our user opinions give our users a chance to voice their opinions about our articles.  This site include these resources: Worship Studies, Worship Music, Church Jobs, Women in Worship, Drama Resources. Sound & Video, Devotionals, Message Boards

Family Worship Resources
Family Worship Resources is a UK based, non-profit organisation providing songs and other resources to help all ages in the church worship together.  What else do we do? Although songs and albums are our primary business, we’re also involved with a whole range of other projects, both in the UK and overseas. Visit the Ministry page for our diary, and details of some of our other activities.

Creative Worship
CreativeWorship.com is a website for worship leaders. Here you can find great songs to lead your congregation in praise and worship. With hundreds of songs, varying from modern rock worship to traditional southern gospel and hymns, you will be able to find any style of song for your worship. Download either a simple, easy to play-along audio recording of the song or a lead sheet, which includes the melody line, lyrics and chords, to get started enjoying and learning new music immediately.

Worship Songs Translated Into Many Languages
The songs and translations on this page were written by many different people. Please see each individual song page for authors and copyright information. Everything here is provided for your free use in praise and worship

Heart of Worship
Welcome to heartofworship.com, our online resource for lead worshippers everywhere. Our vision through this website is to equip and encourage those involved in leading the people of God in worship through music. Heartofworship.com is all about ‘inside-out’ worship. A passion and reverence for God that burns on the inside, and cannot can’t help but express itself externally too. We’re into ‘excellence’ in worship leading, for sure. We’ve got video tutorials on playing various instruments in worship, a section on music theory, and a regular column for congregational song writers too. But ‘excellence’ in worship leading, although important, is not our starting point. The starting point for us here on heartofworship.com is ‘integrity’ in worship leading. We want to make sure that each of us lead worshippers are laying down some strong foundations in worship. We hope the mix of interviews, articles and bible-insights found on this website will go someway towards encouraging you in this. Edited by Matt Redman and Andrew Philip, heartofworship.com draws on the experience and insights of many seasoned church leaders and lead worshippers from around the world.

Passion For Your Name
Our little mission statement for this website is, “Resourcing the worship leader. Refreshing the worshipper.” We hope that this website can do both. Each month there will be a biblical insight into worship; unpacking the Scriptures on the subject. Alongside this there will be practical articles that hopefully will resource and challenge us as we all seek to grow in our gifting.  We are also keen to encourage songwriters. Each month there will be a new article on crafting and developing fresh songs. Additionally there will be a free song – a simple acoustic version, accompanied by sheet music.  Our heart at passionforyourname.com is for the local Church. Jesus said that he’d build his Church. We get to take part. Therefore in all that we do, we hope that it will be relevant to musicians, worship leaders and pastors who are ‘living it out’ in a local church.

Worship Network
The Worship Network is a distinctive television network with one mission and purpose… to help people experience God.In 1992 programming launched out of studios in Clearwater, Florida where viewers were introduced to what is now Worship’s signature programming. Born of a vision that foresaw an opportunity to redeem a television medium that has not been so faith-friendly, Worship flourished into a world-wide affluence that serves to inspire, comfort, guide and encourage people of all ages and races.

Soul Survivor
Soul Survivor, a faith-based non-profit ministry, exists to gather and mobilize young people to change the world, one community at a time.

Audible Faith
Audible Faith is committed to helping artists from all over the world find their voice and get their music heard. By providing distribution, discussion forums, song writing workshops, networks to other artists, and many more resources, we hope to catalyze an outpouring of new songs that enable all of us to reach for a higher standard, reshaping and binding us together. Whether it’s music that preserves and celebrates the rich cultures of our world, sacred songs of worship that inspire and renew, powerful songs of justice that provoke and challenge, or fun songs about everyday life that teach us how to love, laugh and live, our dream is to become the premiere destination for artists who have something to say and for people looking for Music with Meaning™.

Black Gospel Music Clef
Dedicated to providing resources and information for supporters and participants in the ministry of Black Gospel Music.

Choral Net
ChoralNet provides a central portal to online resources and communications for the global choral music community.

Song Discovery
Song DISCovery exists as a resource to bring you some of the best new music for worship. Our mission is to equip Worship Leaders with a broad and diverse selection of worship songs and resources that they can quickly integrate and use in their worship settings – the following Sunday and for years to come.

Hymn Writers of the Church
Biographies of many Hymn writers.

Praise Song.net
The goal of Wigtune Company is to facilitate a lifestyle of worship amongst the body of Christ unto the True and Living God of the Bible .

How To Create Demand For Your Christian Music Ministry

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

by Nate Sakany

Do you know your Unique Core Ministry?

Have you ever thought about what really creates demand for a performing music ministry? I’m talking about substantial demand that develops enough enthusiasm in the local church marketplace to generate the kind of financial revenues that make a part-time or full-time music ministry possible. Most people jump to the most obvious conclusion: the songs and music of an artist. But there are thousands of independent Christian artists out there with tens of thousands of songs. How can you cut through that mass of music? I believe what really creates vibrant demand is deeper than just the music and presentation. That only serves as a “wrapping paper”. It’s the “gift” inside the artist that really counts.
Creating demand is absolutely crucial to short-term and long-term success with your music ministry. A ministry or business that knows how to create demand for itself will never lack for opportunities or financial support. The most solid and long lasting way to create ongoing demand with your music ministry is to stay focused on what I call your Unique Core Ministry (UCM). That is what ultimately creates demand for your music ministry. When you use your UCM as the springboard for songwriting and stage presentation you will indeed have songs and music that connect with your audience at a deep level.
At the core of Incubator’s entire music ministry system is the concept of founding your music ministry upon expressing God’s grace through your own personal story of brokenness. Your life doesn’t need to be some spectacular story of tragedy, debauchery, or visible and obvious pain. Very often, the vulnerable telling of our story involves what might seem almost mundane from a casual outside observance. But, it has likely been excruciating or terrifying to us personally in discovering and developing our testimony.
As artists, we need to understand the essence of our human story. That is God’s grace to a sinner who would rather trust in themselves, an addictive or compulsive behavior, mental gyrations to avoid pain, or a host of other substitutions for an imperfect and unpredictable relationship with the living God. It is truly understanding, embracing, and building our public ministry upon that common human condition. Choosing a basis for ministry strongly connected to a core human condition is what makes your ministry relevant and desirable. It provides the rock solid foundation for a music ministry that deeply touches people and also provides a stable financial basis for a sustainable ministry.
In the early stage of developing a music ministry, success is rooted in gaining insight into your own life and expressing yourself in a vulnerable way through your music and stage presentation. It’s not hard to find teaching on how to succeed by focusing on your strengths. But discovering and accounting for your weaknesses and brokenness is the other half of success seldom talked about. This is particularly true in a Christian subculture fixated on the impossible concept of perfection in a fallen world. In a ministry context, our brokenness (i.e. the stuff that’s wrong with us) is usually more important than all our great gifts and strengths. The apostle Paul said it simply in explaining how God’s strength is made perfect in our weaknesses. The power of the resurrection only has merit when it’s connected to something dead. The best foundation for a Unique Core Ministry is founded on the scripture from the Book of Revelation (Chapter 21) where it’s explained that we overcome the world by, “the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony.”
Remember, a self-discovered person stands out in a crowd. The art and music that they create will carve out its own way and will attract its own audience. Even if it doesn’t attract a large audience, it’s always a loyal audience. This process of self-discovery will lead you to a scary but wonderful place called vulnerability. Vulnerability will drive you to God. God mixed with your vulnerability will make for some great art and music. And that great art and music will connect with people at a deep level. And people who have connected with you at a deep level will be long time supporters (and customers) of your ministry. Now that is creating demand!
Setting to a true and authentic understanding of our humanity and our desperate need for God can be a scary process. Well, it will be if you’re really doing the job right, anyway. Doing it with true courage. My definition of courage is not measured by the magnitude of what I’m facing. It’s measured by how much fear I have when I face whatever it is I need to deal with. So understanding your core issue from which to minister has nothing to do with the specifics of the story. More dramatic testimonies are not more effective than more ‘mundane’ testimonies. What makes a testimony powerful is the degree of authenticity, vulnerability and courage displayed by the teller.
I love a good movie (I can pull a great spiritual theme out of almost anything). In the closing scene from “Raiders of the Lost Ark” a troop of Nazis have captured the Ark of the Covenant (along with the hero and heroine of the movie). It is set up on a makeshift “altar” in the mountains. Indiana Jones’ archenemy is dressed in priestly robes. He leads the troupe in a ritual to remove the lid from the Ark to discover its true contents. As the lid is removed, the fire of God begins to rise from the Ark. It inflames and consumes ‘the priest’ then proceeds out from him – like so many jaggedy lightning bolts – to race throughout the ‘congregation’ shooting through the mid-section of each of the soldiers like a bending and fierce laser beam. The image is powerful. The all-consuming fire of God doing a righteously good job of consuming.
How would you like to see God move like that in your concerts? Well, maybe not exactly like that (the all-consuming stuff would kind of have a way of limiting your return engagements!). But wouldn’t you like to see the fire of God burn within you, then race out among your audience members finding its mark directly in the heart of your audience members like some kind of holy heat seeking missile?
Well you can. But first you’re going to have to pop the top off the Ark. And you’re going to have to let the fire of God examine you and first pierce your heart before it proceeds on its way to the audience. The amazing thing is that this level of experience with God’s grace and your personal authenticity yields an irresistible spiritual force to connect with audience members. It’s a spiritual force that allows God to follow on that ‘carrier beam’ directly to the heart of the listeners. It hits people right in the mid-section just like that lightning bolt.
Think about it. Just like those stoic Nazi soldiers, no matter how much an audience member might like to avoid being ‘touched’ by God, His powerful ‘fire’ would be unavoidable. It would cut through all the mental defenses to the very core of their spirit – just like that lightning bolt. Can you picture it – the fire of God traveling on your own story expressed through simple human vulnerability and authenticity? You’ve probably experienced this kind of irresistible effect if you’ve ever heard someone speak or sing with this kind of vulnerability.
The scariest part about all this is that ‘fire of God’ must first burn its way through us as the spokesman! He must first do a work in us before the ‘lightning’ will jump out into the congregation. So, preceding this kind of ministry working through you, you will need to work through the ‘burning’ process in preparation for Him to use you in ministry to others.
Isn’t it funny how the Lord seems to choose the oddest stuff from our lives to use in ministry to others? It’s sometimes as if Jesus looks at my life He says, “Hmm. What’s the least likely thing that anyone would expect I could use to bring glory to my Father?” It seems the more dead, decayed and corrupt – the better it is. After all, He’s pretty familiar with bringing dead stuff back to life. As a matter of fact, you might say it’s His main gig!
Too often, we have the idea that God does his best work through the wonderful talents and gifts He has given us. As musicians, we often think that people are bound to be touched because we are committed to being excellent in our craft. Or, that God has given us some special spiritual gifts for a communications ministry. Granted, He does work through His Spirit to do the supernatural through us. We do indeed hold a treasure in earthen vessels. More often, God chooses the weak and helpless areas of our life to do that ministry in the lives of others. When God works through your strengths it’s a very satisfying thing. When God works through your weakness it’s satisfying, in a very humbling kind of way.
When I talk about focusing on the core method of ministry, I’m talking about using this method of allowing God to reach others through the vulnerable telling of your human story of God’s grace. Figuring out what that story is and how to mold it into a powerful ministry presentation is not a quick thing. It takes some time, some courage, some good objectivity and a caring coach and guide (that’s one of the most enjoyable aspects of my work at Incubator). Sadly, the more indoctrinated you are in the church or Christian culture, the harder it sometimes is to get to a truly authentic foundation. But building on that solid foundation will give you a powerful core ministry. It will create ministry ‘fans’ that connect with you at an amazingly deep level. These are loyal fans that will grow over time to become a great spiritual family and solid and long lasting ‘customers’ for your music ministry.
This principle of the Unique Core Ministry is central to what I consider Secret #2 for success in music ministry. That secret is “focus on the core method of ministry.” By that, I mean keep your focus here, don’t get distracted from this foundation. There are countless ways to be pulled off this core method. There are lots of folks out there with myriad ideas about how to do music ministry, how to build your music career, or whatever the latest fad for the indie artist. Don’t be distracted. Stay on this course. By keeping it a central point of your ministry building process, you will not dilute your efforts. And you will naturally make wise decisions that will contribute to building a sustainable and stable future.
You can discover all three of my secrets (and a bunch of other great stuff, too) in my free nine-week online course entitled, “Successful Music Ministry.” It’s a combination of email lessons and online audio and interaction. You can actually complete the course in less than nine weeks if you want to zip on through it. Sign up at the Incubator Creative Group website (Incubator Creative Group). Just click on the “free stuff” link.

Nate Sakany Founder & President of Incubator Creative Group

Copyright 2009 Incubator Creative Group. All rights reserved.


About the Author

Nate Sakany is the founder and President of Incubator Creative Group. He is Christian music’s top expert in emerging artist development for the local church marketplace having served as a full-time professional for 30 years. Nate has founded and managed three artist development companies including his own agency, a non-profit educational organization, and Incubator Creative Group (the Christian music industry’s only incubator organization).