Growing Up In The Ministry Eph. 4:11-16 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
Today’s message on growing up in the ministry encourages you to go from growing up in spiritual childhood to increasing in spiritual maturity. When you get saved, you are a child. We are called children of God and sons of God. As newborn babes we desire the sincere milk of the word. But God doesn’t want you to stay as a child, drinking milk and needing to be spoon fed and pampered, needing somebody to change your little diaper. You don’t want to be so fragile that we have to walk around you with little nursery booties on.
When you first get saved you are in one of the most vulnerable times in your life because you can be tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine. Children are often tossed to and fro by their parents when they are young. We used to play that game with our kids in the swimming pool at the ranch. You can be carried about with wind like a kite. People have to ask, “Where do you stand?” Well, that depends which way the wind is blowing [like a politician]. Children can be easily deceived. But you are supposed to grow up where you are stronger in faith and not deceived by crafty and cunning men. This requires growing up in the ministry.
Growing up in the ministry involves:
Growing – Eph 4:15 – you need to grow up. You do that by pastors and teachers speaking the truth to you in love, which is what I am doing now. The body edifies itself in love. To edify is to instruct in such a way as to improve. And when it does you grow up into him in ALL things because he is the head.
Fitting – Eph 4:16– as you grow, you need to recognize that you fit somewhere. God certainly knows this; he sets the members in the body as it pleases him. If you are not finding your place in the body you are either not part of the body or you are still in the nursery or you are new and waiting as God reveals where and how you fit.
Compacting – Eph 4:16 the fit is compacted; that means it is a close fit. The body is not loose knit. So as you grow, you should be moving from the periphery to the inside, to the core. Have you ever seen a trash compacter? I filled a trash compacter one time so full I couldn’t get the bag out; it was too compact and heavy. Well, you find yourself compacted in one body with other members.
Supplying – Eph 4:16 – every joint supplieth. That is ever joint supplies the body and you supply the body. It is a mutual supply. If you are not supplying something to the body then you are only leeching.
Working – Eph 4:16 – the working of every part. That means you should be working in the measure of your part, whatever that is. The ministry takes a lot of work. And some people don’t like work; they like convenience. There is nothing convenient about the work of the ministry. Randy, our associate pastor, was running three businesses when he began doing his part in this ministry. It was tough to say the least. But God matured him in that work and now he is the full-time associate. By the way, praying for this ministry is fruitful work.
Increasing – Eph 4:16 – working and growing up in the ministry makes increase of the body. The body grows as it should, just as natural bodies grow. We poured a lot of Bible into one fellow after he got saved and now he has led two others to the Lord and he is encouraging them to grow by getting into their Bibles.
Conclusion: Are you growing up in the ministry? Are you doing your part in the ministry? If not, start growing up in the ministry. Also, if you are lost you, you are merely “on” the body but you are not “in” the body. You are like this coat I am wearing. I can simply take it off and throw it aside just like Jesus will remove you into the lake of fire. You need to be attached to the body like a finger. That way, no matter where the body is you will be there. Right now we are seated in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. Want to join us?