… equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ.
Ephesians 4:12 (ESV)
CEF Culture Point 2
Importance of the Spiritual Welfare of our Workers
It is vital that we are never satisfied to simply teach our staff the methods of how to reach children and how to train others to do so, but we must purposefully invest in the spiritual lives of our staff. When CEF® staff are men and women who are primarily driven by passion for God and His glory and have a clear call from the Lord, the work will prosper. If we keep our focus on God and on His calling, then we will be sustained in times of challenge.
Nobody is perfect! Christians are no exception. Therefore, Christ has given us different kinds of gifted people – apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers (v 11) – to equip the saints. To equip means to fix what is broken and to add what is missing. This includes both training others in skills and helping to shape their character.
In CEF we are generally quite good in the area of training, aren’t we? In our training courses we fix what is broken or add what is missing in children’s ministry. We train others in new skills and methods and even hand out teaching materials. This is one important way of equipping the saints!
But there is another aspect. It has to do with building a spiritual and mature character. The context of our memory verse shows that this is of great importance; so that we are not carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes (v 14). We will face challenges of all kinds in our ministry and lives. Only those who are well equipped spiritually will keep their focus on God and will be sustained in difficult times.
How can we invest in the spiritual lives of the “CEF saints”?
Although the gifted people Christ has given to equip believers are different (v 11), they do have one thing in common. They all proclaim truth: the truth of God, of Christ and the Gospel.
We can invest in the spiritual lives of those, whom God has entrusted into our care, by ensuring that the truth of Christ dwells in them richly (Col 3:16). You can do this for example by encouraging them to memorise Scripture. You do it by giving them well prepared spiritual food at your meetings, or by giving them a good book to read.
In purposefully investing in the spiritual lives of “the saints” we not only help our own work to prosper, but we also support the churches and help the whole body of Christ to grow!