What is God’s will for your ministry in 2024? One thing I was encouraged to do leading into 2024 was to consider my Ideal Outcomes for 2024. So I sat down and prayerfully considered the question, “if God did more than I could think or imagine in our ministry, what might that be?” Above all, the exercise led me to worship, prayer and repentance. Though the idea is probably not new to anyone, I still found it helpful. First, it set my sight on where we wanted to go as a ministry before we started working on getting there. But to figure out where I wanted to go, the practice immediately makes me think theologically about the different “Wills” of God in Scripture at a basic level. First, I considered the “Prescriptive Will of God” (what God has commanded). God has called me in my ministry, out of love for Him and others, to be faithful in my obedience to Him and His commands (John 14:15; Romans 12:1-2). This first caused me to align my thinking and desires with what God has clearly called me to in 2024. Though it seems obvious in ministry, I’m not sure we always start there. Start with what God has declared, prescribed and what we know pleases Him! As I thought about what pleases Him, I thought of our obedience and faithfulness to His commands/commissions, His not taking pleasure in the death of anyone (Ez 18:32), and of His pleasure in accomplishing His sovereign, redemptive purposes (Eph 1, Rom 9). As I prayed and meditated on this, it enlarged and grew my heart and desires for what I longed for in our ministry and gave direction for how I may faithfully minister this year. It gave me a target to then evaluate our ministry practices. However, it also pushed me to consider God’s “Sovereign Will.” Many of my Ideal Outcomes may not come about this year. Honestly, there is grief in my heart already knowing that. However, the practice made me run to King Jesus and rest in God’s Sovereign rule and plan. I am sure 2024 will not look like the story I wrote out in my Ideal Outcomes. Yet this practice allows me to set my course on God’s Revealed Will and my heart can rest in God’s Hidden Will (Deut 29:29). For God is good, and He is indeed in control! To me, this whole practice reflected the life of a Christian; an opportunity to worship, to repent, to realign with God’s purposes, pursue obedience by faith and to rest in God sovereign will. I write this excited to passionately give myself to the ministry God has called me to but doing so in dependence on Him, resting in God’s supervisor and provision of everything that happens. May the Lord bless 2024 for His glory and our good!

Posted by Hudson Belk at 2024-01-12 15:57:36 UTC