To finish my series of posts on ‘My Theology of Ministry’, I’d like to discuss the final portion of this statement: Ministry is best done toward a community, through community, and in community.
Of the three portions of this statement, pastors (and especially church planters) fail to achieve this last one most often. The concept of targeting a specific community and even ministering to that community through community is understandable. It’s the last part of this statement that forces us to go against everything our culture teaches us. We aren’t individuals who’s success and failure rests solely on our own shoulders, but rather we need to be a community of ministers reaching a city/region where the success and failure of our ministry is dependent on each part of that ‘ministry community’ reaching their respective communities.
As ministers we often preach that life is best lived ‘in community’ but we can fail to ‘live in community’ ourselves. It’s been proven that church plants succeed best when a church planter is part of a church planting peer group. I would venture to guess that the same could be said for ministers in general. Why? Because we all need each other. Ministers don’t survive long when they’re in it for themselves or by themselves. So remember, Ministry is best done toward a community, through community, and in community.