Recently I was trying to think through the most simple way to represent what happens in successful ministry. What is the fewest number of things that need to happen for the basic ministry process to be complete?
Here’s are the seven elements I have so far:
Living and loving like Jesus
Followers of Jesus must live like Jesus, showing God’s love to others and doing the work of the Kingdom of God. This is the great commandment, and is foundational for everything else.
Inviting people to follow Jesus
Those who are following Jesus then invite others to follow him. This is the great commission.
Starting new believers in the faith
New believers must be established in the faith through baptism and through community with other believers.
Growing as disciples while making disciples
All believers are both being discipled and discipling others. In this way, new believers grow, and those who have been in the faith longer also continue to grow.
Gathering in groups
Believers have always gathered together for encouragement, worship, and prayer. This is the commandment given in Hebrews 10.
Developing leaders for ministry
We need leaders to serve the church. Just as disciples develop other disciples, leaders develop other leaders.
Sending leaders to plant new churches
Some of those leaders then go on to reach out beyond the church and develop new communities of faith in new places, bringing Jesus to the next neighborhood and next people group.
I’d welcome your thoughts on this simple ministry flow. Is there anything I’m forgetting? Anything essential to the church that doesn’t fit under one of these categories?
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