Over the years ministry development has become part of the gifting and service the Lord has given us to provide. We have dealt with all kinds of Kingdom work—from being the midwife in the birthing process to adulthood and maturity, we have the privilege of assisting in the growth and development process. Some through leadership training in the church, some ministries that reach into the culture and communities, and others in the market place establishing and growing Christian businesses. All deal with the same issues, cross the same borders and strive to impact and influence the expansion of the Kingdom of God.
To some the very thought of ‘structures’ speaks of restrictions and man made plans. Goals become the devil’s playground and written vision a worldly exercise. On the other extreme is blueprints written with such detail it would give a person asthma just to read them and would appear as lifeless as last year’s rose stems. Both miss the mark and both are prime targets for the enemy!
So where is the middle ground?
In the early pioneers’ days of this nation men began the daunting task of building the railroad from the East to the West coast. What they did and how they did it offer us ‘life lessons’ in living and possessing the Kingdom of God.
When the railroad pioneers went west they were guided only by the compass and the task they had been given. Day by day they laid the track and as they did so, a detailed map was formed.
Day after day they kept the course by knowing the task and using the compass. After they moved along and in retrospect they could ‘see’ the structure that their efforts had laid down. Those that came after them could set out across the great expanse no longer having to rely on the compass alone—the tracks had given them a detailed map to guide them.
A new wine skin means a new thing—a unique vessel for the use of Almighty God to impact the darkness of this world. In order to achieve God’s purpose there must first be an understanding we are not building monuments we are part of a movement. Like the movement of the water ways the Holy Spirit is in the world today continually saying. “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?”
New things will always mean going where no man has gone before. New things will always mean new and fresh life through relationship. First with the Father through the Son, then with others as the Holy Spirit connects the body of Christ. Without this as the foundation of all new endeavors whatever is built will crumble and fall or head off-in the wrong direction.
To participate in the movement of God we have to use the radar of the Holy Spirit to guide and direct into the new thing. He alone is the compass of life and knows the purpose for which we were born and has ordained since the beginning of time. As we the people of God move forward the Holy Spirit will reveal structures and goals, without which we will simply go in circles repeating what everyone else has been doing and getting further and further away from the core of Holy Spirit’s power or the reality of the Living Word in our midst.
The courts of heaven are full of the plans, patterns and agendas through which God is fulfilling His purpose for mankind. When we relate to Him and surrender to His governance the blueprint of our lives can be laid down day by day and in the process a glorious structure is arising. Vision, goals and a pathway to fulfillment is seen—a life well lived is well structured.
Spiritually what is rising is the temple of the Living God. Practically it is the works that each child of God has been predestined and ordained to accomplish.
Don’t get caught in the extremes of—must have a structure laid out and ready or… cannot have any restrictions drawn up by man. Don’t think that the cloud surrounding your activity is the Holy Spirit— could simply be the dust you are stirring up. Or it may be the dust of the old structure you have drawn up from repetition of what others have done!
Use the fresh pattern and structure of the Holy Spirit as He reveals it morning by morning. Others will see the structure and if called to participate it will let them know the direction you are going in and keep you going in the correct direction with unity of purpose. To use both compass and map is the wisdom of God—each has its purpose and designated application.
Diane M. Hale
January 21st. 2013