We respect the real thought leaders in ministry who are doing ministry day in and day out. Because of that, we’re bringing you different voices with real ministry perspective to aid, challenge and inspire you. It’s not about what we think, it’s about helping you learn from your peers. And in that, we’ll all growing together.
As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17
By Chris Elrod
In my last article about reaching the hard to reach for Christ I talked about the realities. Today I want to talk about the rewards.
1. You get to see God move – I cannot tell you how many times things looked bleak or on the edge of disaster – then God showed up!!! There was the day when it looked like we were going to have take a loan from our denomination just to pay bills. Then our Executive Pastor checked the mail and found a letter with a $10,000 check made out to us. There was the time when a local church told us we could use one of the vacant buildings for our youth to meet in. When they saw the “kind of freaks” we reached they changed their mind. We moved our teen Bible study to a local park because there was no place we could afford to rent. Imagine our surprise when God moved and teens hanging out in the park started showing up to our study – and getting saved. Our student ministry almost doubled in attendance. Reaching the hard to reach is always a risk and God always shows up in a miraculous way!
2. You get to see people come to Christ – This is literally the thing that gets me up in the morning. To see a person that was lost spiritually and without hope come to Christ is an experience beyond words. You get to see God become real in their life and them develop hope in their heart. You get to watch as they start “getting” the Bible and apply its truths to their life. You get to see life – and eternity – change. There is no greater feeling!
3. You get to take the battle to the Devil – Reaching the hard to reach isn’t for the faint of heart. It also isn’t for pastors that want to spend 30 hours a week on sermon prep or hanging out with other church leaders in coffee shop. It is for those that love to be active on the front lines of spiritual warfare. When you are trying to reach people that Satan has a firm hold of it will create some pretty interesting scenarios. You are constantly under spiritual attack, but you are also constantly seeing the Devil lose people from his grip. That is a GREAT feeling!
4. You get to have an exciting “job” – Reaching the hard to reach is NEVER boring. If you are a thrill junkie, ADD or just an adventurous person then this is for you. You meet some pretty extreme people and see some pretty extreme things. No two days are the same and no two people react the same way. There is always a new risk, new adventure and new people that have never heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
5. You play a part in God’s plan – As a pastor I never have a day when I wonder if God has His hand on us. This is not out of arrogance, but out of fearful humility. I know there is nothing we do special that reaches people – it is solely the work of God in our midst. I have discovered that when your church’s sole mission is to reach the hard to reach there is evidence of God’s moving on a weekly basis. I know that we make mistakes and do some things that are less than excellent, but I never question if God is using us. Compass Point sees people coming to Christ almost monthly and know that we are a tool He is using to carrying out His plan for our community. It is not something we take for granted and are always grateful for.
Next week, come back here for the next installment of Chris Elrod‘s series, where he will discuss methods for reaching the hard to reach for Christ.
And be sure to share your thoughts in comments – we’d love to hear what you think.