As I was reading my King James Bible last night, I came across Isaiah 41:6-7:
6 They helped every one his neighbour; and every one said to his brother, Be of good courage. 7 So the carpenter encouraged the goldsmith, and he that smootheth with the hammer him that smote the anvil, saying, It is ready for the sodering: and he fastened it with nails, that it should not be moved.
The Holy Spirit moved upon me, in that all too familiar small still voice. He immediately impressed on my heart that some ministries are afraid or reluctant to help each other out or associate with others over fear or a sense of competition. He also impressed on me that there are some that won’t even encourage, comment on or praise other ministries for the same reasons. This struck me as sad, because I’ve often seen it, but it never came to my complete attention until His Spirit brought it up last night.
The body of Christ and it’s wide variety of ministry is not in competition. Do one’s fingers disassociate with one’s arm? Does one’s leg disassociate with one’s neck? Of course not, it would be a disaster and the body would fall apart. In the deepest recesses of our fleshy minds, if we are honest with ourselves, we have a selfish desire to succeed on our own. We also, as human beings, have this innate desire to compete with one another. If we deny that it does not influence us in our walk with the Lord and in our ministries, we deceive ourselves.
2 Corinthians 10:12-16 - 12 For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.
You see, God has given each person a gift, calling and ministry above and beyond the great commission. We should not worry or concern ourselves with worldly things like reputation, clicks, likes, shares, views, impressions etc. If we are obedient to Christ, and teach the truth, He blesses that.
Philippians 2:3 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
Subduing this competitive spirit is challenging, but with the Spirit’s help, we can love one another, encourage one another and provoke one another to good works. We should have no fear to share, promote, like, click, visit, subscribe to, talk to, comment on and love on our fellow brother’s and sisters ministries. As a matter of fact, I would challenge anyone who is in ministry reading this, to actively promote others who are actively and earnestly trying to share the Good News.
They may not see things exactly as you do. As a matter of fact they might have a difference of opinion on the timing of the rapture, or perhaps they disagree with you on the other countless things Christian’s do. But if other ministries are wholly committed and believe in the saving power of the Gospel of Christ, what is holding you back from supporting or interacting with them? We can’t allow ourselves to fall into the trap and exclusivity of believing we’re the only true saved/born again people because we think our view on the rapture, gifts of the spirit etc. are more correct than someone else’; that those people are going to hell because of those issues. We have to look at the heart, and fruit they bare.
Matthew 7:16-20 16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? 17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. 19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. 20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
In the end, God will be the one to increase or decrease. We must trust in Him, that He knows what is best. Can God increase your ministry even if you are actively promoting others over yourself? Yes! Can God decrease your ministry even if you do everything perfectly and shut out others? Yes! It’s all in His hands, and we must do everything we can to unite as the body of Christ, even if we’re fearful that doing so will somehow make us look bad in the eyes of others.