Mar 20, 2018

4 Keys to Seeing God Do More in Your Ministry

Do you want to see God do more in your ministry?  Do you want your best days of ministry to be ahead of you rather than behind you?  Do you long to see God do something fresh and new in your life and ministry?

I'm believing that for you.  And I've got some good news.  God wants to do more in your life and ministry.

The apostle Paul was writing to the church of Ephesus.  They had seen God do amazing things in the ministry there.  People had come to Christ.  People had been healed.  People had turned from the many false gods that were ingrained in their culture.  But there was so much more that God was ready to do in them and through them.

Paul writes to tell them this.
"Now glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely MORE than we might ask or think."   Ephesians 3:20
In this verse, are 4 keys to seeing God do more in your ministry.  Let's look at the first one.
"Now glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work WITHIN US, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think."   Ephesians 3:20
Key #1 -  If we are going to see God do more through our ministry, we first have to ask God to do more WITHIN US.  Elisha is a great example of this.  God had done amazing things through his predecessor, Elijah.  And now He was preparing Elisha to do even more.  But first, Elisha had to let God do more within him.

God asked Elisha to surrender to His will.  Look what happened as recorded in 1 Kings.

"Elijah went over to him (Elisha) and threw his cloak across his shoulders and then walked away.  Elisha left the oxen standing there, ran after Elijah, and said to him, 'First let me go and kiss my father and mother good-bye, and then I will go with you!'"

God was preparing Elisha to do more.  But first He wanted to see if Elisha was willing to surrender everything to Him.  Would He be willing to walk away from his current life?  Would He be willing to let go of his plans and follow God's plans?
If we are going to see God do more through our ministry, we must be willing to say more than "I surrender some."  We must be willing to say "I surrender all."
God also wanted to see if Elisha would be willing to sacrifice everything to see more.  Here's what happened.

"Elisha returned to his oxen and slaughtered them.  He used the wood from the plow to build a fire to roast their flesh.  He passed around the meat to the townspeople, and they all ate.  Then he went with Elijah."

Elisha was willing to go all in.  He surrendered his oxen and plow.  This was his livelihood.  He was sacrificing everything.  No turning back.

If we are going to see God do more within us, we must be willing to hold everything with open hands and sacrifice it all for the sake of the cross.

Finally, Elisha had to be willing to serve.  Look what happened.

"Then he (Elisha) set out to follow Elijah and become his servant."

Notice that before Elisha was entrusted with more, he had to first be willing to serve.  We must be willing to serve others.  Put others before ourselves.  Let go of our ego and replace it with "we go."

Jesus modeled this by washing the disciples' feet.  This act of service was reserved for the lowest servants in the kingdom.  Jesus was showing us that we must be willing to have the heart of a servant, if we want to see God do great things.  The way up is down.  Servant leadership.  It sounds like an oxymoron, doesn't it?  But it's the way to see God do more within you.

Because Elisha was willing to surrender, sacrifice and serve, He saw God do more.  Elijah saw God do 14 miracles through his ministry.  Elisha saw God do 28 miracles through his ministry.

Key #2 -  If we are going to see God do more through our ministry, we must have more POWER.
"Now glory to God, who is able, through His mighty POWER at work, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think."   Ephesians 3:20
The bad news is you and I can't change anyone's life.  The bad news is we cannot do more in our own strength and power.

The good news?  The Holy Spirit can do more through us.

His power is able to change people's lives.  His power is able to save marriages.  His power is able to heal.

And this power is available to you.  Check out Acts 1:8.

"But you will receive POWER when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.  And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere - in Jerusalem, through Judea, in Samaria and to the ends of the earth."

And Luke 24:49.

"Behold, I send you the promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with POWER from on high."

God loves to fill ordinary people with His power and do extraordinary things through them.  How do you see more of His power working through you?

Acknowledge that nothing of eternal value happens without the Holy Spirit.  Zechariah 4:6-7 says, "Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit," says the Lord. 

Ask the Holy Spirit to anoint you.  Luke 11:13 says, "If you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him."

Accept by faith that the Holy Spirit is at work.  I Thessalonians 1:5 says, "For when we brought you the Good News, it was not only with words but also with power, for the Holy Spirit gave you full assurance that what we said was true."

When you take these steps, you will see the Holy Spirit power more at work in your ministry.

Key #3 - If we are going to see God do more in our ministry, then we must have more PRAYER.
"Now glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work , to accomplish infinitely more than we might ASK or think."
Ephesians 3:20
Prayer is the door that opens us to more.

In Mark 9, the disciples tried to cast out a demonic spirit who was tormenting a young boy.  But they were not able to cast the demon out.  Jesus had to step in and overcome the demon.  Afterwards they asked Him why they couldn't cast out the demon. 

Jesus said, "This kind doesn't come out without prayer and fasting."

If you want to see big miracles, then you've got to pray more.

If you want to see God use you more, then you've got to pray more.

If you want to see your ministry go the next level, then you've got to prayer more.

This kind...this "more" kind...only happens with more prayer.

Key #4 - If we are going to see God do more in our ministry, then we must have more VISION.
"Now glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work , to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or THINK."   Ephesians 3:20 
Have you grown complacent?

Have you stopped dreaming about more?

Has your vision waned?

Have you given up on your vision because others said it was impossible?

Joseph is a great example of having a vision for more.  He had a vision from God as a young man.

Now when you have a big vision for more, you will be misunderstood.  Joseph's brothers and parents questioned his motives. 

When you have a big vision for more, realize that you will also face opposition.  Joseph was betrayed by his brothers, put in a well, sold as a slave, lied about by his boss's wife and was thrown into prison.  But none of that stopped him.  He didn't give up on the vision in the face of opposition.

Have you given up on your vision for more?  Have you faced setbacks and detours?  Don't quit.  Keep pursuing your vision for more.

Why?

Because when you pursue a vision for more, God is with you.  In the well, in the chain gang, in the prison, God was with Joseph. 

Remember the vision you have tucked away?  Get it back out.  God hasn't forgotten you or your vision.  He is with you. 

Stop listening to the voices in your head that say you can't do it.  Stop listening to the voices around you that say you can't see your vision fulfilled.  If the vision is from God, it can happen.

Not satisfied where your ministry is now?  Longing to see God do more?  Ready to move forward?

Let God do more within you.
Ask God for more power.
Spend more time in prayer.
Enlarge your vision.

God is ready to do more than you could ever imagine!

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