The “Brave New World” of the 21st Century requires a “Brave New Discipleship” strategy.

The 5th Mark of A Complete Christian: Grows in Ministry Skill

Posted on: July 28, 2015

BND Mark #5

THE FIFTH MARK OF A COMPLETE CHRISTIAN IS THAT HE GROWS IN MINISTRY SKILL.

God gives each person a job to do and gifts to do it with. Therefore, a complete Christian discovers and uses his spiritual gifts and shares his faith with others.

1 peter 4:10 tells us, “As each one has received a gift, employ it in serving one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” This tells us several things.

  1. Each of us has a gift (perhaps more?).
  2. The purpose of the gift is to serve one another with it.
  3. Doing so is a matter of stewardship. It is not optional.
  4. It is a part of the grace of God that He extends to us.

By calling us to use our spiritual gifts in service to others, God is setting us up for a life of deep satisfaction, meaning and purpose. Because we were created by Him for good works, we will only experience full satisfaction in life as we are using our gifts to do the works He has prepared for us.

In addition, God is setting us up for great eternal reward. The Gospels tell us that we cannot even give someone a cup of cold water to drink without getting an eternal reward (Matthew 10:42). So, in addition to giving us purpose and meaning in this life with our gifts, He then rewards us for using them.

That is where the grace comes in. First, God gives us a gift. Second, he gives us earthly purpose and meaning in using it. And third, he rewards us eternally for using what He gave us in the first place. I’d call that grace (undeserved favor).

In addition to using our spiritual gifts, we are also stewards of the message of the gospel, as we are each responsible to share our faith with others. In Matthew 28:19-20, we read what is called the Great Commission: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you.” Each of us is to accept the Great Commission as our own Personal Commission.

So, in addition to learning how to use our spiritual gifts, God calls everyone to share his faith, and He has gifted each of us to share our faith in a way that is consistent with our God-wiring. We may not find deep satisfaction in sharing our faith the way someone else shares his faith, but we will find deep satisfaction sharing our faith the way God has created and gifted us to share it.

If you could wave a magic wand and do whatever you wanted for the Lord, and knew that you would be successful, what would you do? When you have answered that question, you very well may be staring at something great that God would like to use you to do to bring great purpose and meaning in this life, and great reward in the next.

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I go into The 7 Marks of a Complete Christian in greater depth in my latest book, Brave New Discipleship.

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