October 4, 2016

How to Increase Your Influence in Ministry

"I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it would move. Nothing would be impossible."

Like the many analogies in the parables of Jesus, the mountain He spoke of represents the issues and obstacles we face in our lives. In this scripture, Jesus is letting us know that with the right tools and skills that encourage, and build confidence, we can influence the mountains in our lives.

People, when encouraged become more confident and their faith is increased. When this occurs moving the mountains in your life becomes possible. Understanding this increases your influence to change anything in ministry, at work and in your community. 

With this in mind, I encourage you to do these three things.
  1. Stop asking God for the wisdom to give up.
    Have you ever heard the following statement. “God help me to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference”?

    I've heard this line repeated hundreds of times. You may have repeated it yourself. But there is a flaw in this statement. 

    As far back as when I taught bible study at a local “Men Center” for drug and alcohol recovery, I've felt that there was something wrong with this statement.

    In my view this statement is a path of least resistance. It says that, you give up, and surrender whenever things don’t go your way or if change doesn’t come fast enough. 

    Influence doesn’t come through surrender, neither does change. Here's my suggestion. How about we say, God help me to accept the things I cannot change, right away

    In 4 Things to do While You're Waiting on Change, I wrote that change doesn’t come over night, it takes time and some things take more time.

    A statement like, “God help me to accept the things I cannot change,” is a contradiction to scripture.

    If as a Christian you believe that you can do all things through Jesus or you believe the words to the song, “All things are possible”, then there is no reason for “wisdom to know the difference”.

  2. Build your skills and find the right tools.
    The process of increasing your influence requires the right skills and the right tools.

    In 2 Timothy 2:15, Paul gives some advice to Timothy, "Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth". 

    Here Paul uses the word 'work' as in the work of ministry or even, to do a good job. To be the best or even good at your position, requires study, preparation, dedication and continued learning. These things build skill and lead to finding the proper tools for gaining influence. 

  3. Act differently.
    Becoming an influencer, requires that you start acting differently. Put what you’re learning to action. Study those who are doing what you are seeking to do. Find what fits and emulate them.
Being able to influence makes you an influencer and influencers have the power to change anything.