Premarital Counseling is very important to those planning to wed. Marriage is a complex concept and if we’re going to do it well, we need guidance from someone with the training and knowledge to help us. These questions help facilitate these goals. Some or all can be used for these purposes.
With the couple before me, I have them fill these questionnaires out separately and then we discuss them together. Marriage brings people of diverse experiences and teachings together and these questions help them see what they know and whether they’re truly compatible.
In doing so, we can steer them to Scripture and give them spiritual guidance along the way. However, many of these questions are of a practical nature and cover subjects most couples never consider before their nuptials.
“Then he instructed the crowds to sit down on the grass. He took the five loaves and two fish, and looking up to heaven he gave thanks and broke the loaves. He gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds.”
Even during his earthly ministry, Jesus often used his disciples to mediate his blessings to people, as he did during the feeding of the five thousand.
How does the Lord observe this principle today, of using his people to bless others?
#ministry #VOTD #mediation
Since it concerns me personally in our location, I found this to be an amazing statistic as far as global comparisons. And I don’t even have a smartphone.
About the time the state phone company got their public phones on just about every street corner in Brazil a few years back, mobile started growing and taking over. (It threw away millions because it couldn’t see the trend coming.) Now it’s hard to find a Brazilian without a smartphone.
And now it’s hard to have a conversation (or a worship meeting) without a smartphone turning up to interrupt.
There are downsides but advantages, too. See the link above for more.
The Lord Jesus Christ kept his balance between seeking the Father and serving people. He did not let the demands and needs of others keep him from time alone in prayer and meditation. Neither did he neglect proclaiming the Father’s word to both crowds and individuals by escaping by himself to a mountain.
Every saint needs this same balance. Spirituality and ministry are not either/or options, but both/and necessities. Without the Father, service is mere social improvement. Without the practice of faith, spirituality becomes nothing more than another form of consumerism.
Ron T. has an excellent article that deserves a close reading, “Dismissing the preacher for a change in direction.”
What Ron describes is a symptom of a larger problem, it would seem, of treating preachers (and preachers considering themselves) as employees.
You hear and read it all the time, that a man is a “preacher for” such-and-such congregation. Language betrays. Profound restoration is needed on this point.
In the 2017 FHU Lectureship book, a contributor wrote about “lay” preachers. Editors let that go.
What is the opposite of laymen? Clergy.
Some things one does for one’s own spiritual benefit, as is right and necessary. If by chance those things benefit others, as they often will, so much the better. Growth in the Spirit is not a lonely nor selfish proposition. Of course, one must take care that such benefit does not become the end-all and do-all of ministry. There is that service that is undertaken solely for the benefit and need of one’s neighbor. The overflow of my benefit to the other cannot be the main service provided for another. The additional blessing to others that comes from one’s own efforts toward growth can never substitute the teaching, evangelism, edification, and benevolence given to others. But when the additional blessing occurs, blessing indeed it can be.
An evangelical group’s survey found “bleak state” in these results of ministers’ finances:
The survey reveals that 30 percent of pastors have student loan debt averaging $36,000; 33 percent have less than $10,000 in retirement funds; and 29 percent have no retirement savings.
The survey also revealed that a minority received financial orientation in their ministerial studies.
Makes one wonder how evangelists, preachers, missionaries, and elders supported by our people are doing financially.
One suspects that many are, like the apostle to the Gentiles, learning the secret of contentment with little, Php 4.12.
#ministry #finances #money