And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men. Mark 1:17 NIV
There is a very interesting word in the English language called a “pattern.” It has several meanings and thus serves numerous purposes while trying to convey a thought. Some of the meaning would include: design: a repeated decorative design, e.g. on fabric; plan or model: a plan or model used as a guide for making something; prototype: an original design or model from which exact copies can be made; or a good example: a model that is considered to be worthy of imitation, just to name a few. Jesus Christ is often referred to as the “Pattern Son.” In other words, He is a Model, a Prototype or Good Example, that has been used by the Great Seamstress or Tailor of Heaven, as a guide for making something or an original design from which exact copies can be made and is considered worthy of imitation. With Christ solely established as our “pattern” in life, ministry, business, etc, let’s take a look at how He built His ministry.
The scripture above says that Jesus’ original offer to His first members, first leadership team, first staff, was: ‘Come, follow Me, and I will make you to become….!” What a deal! He didn’t lure them with a promise to hold a title. He didn’t negotiate with them for a good salary. Jesus didn’t hire a Human Resource Manager to sell the disciples on the 401K Plan and other “bennies” (benefits). Jesus offered them something greater, an opportunity to “become.” Jesus was and still is a MAKER.” He is in the Making business.
My question to the Church is, “who are the Movers and the Makers in the Church?” It seems like few are in the “making” business anymore. I get such a holy anger when I hear leaders talk about how one day God is going to send lawyers, doctors, professionals and millionaires to their church. Well, I’m all for evangelistic efforts and agree that these people have to go somewhere to be discipled, by why “your church?” Why can’t you follow Christ’s pattern and look your members in the face and say as He did, “Follow me, and I will make you become…” This is the language of a builder. Many leaders have gotten out of the making business and have resorted to the “taking” business. This mentality has originated in the world. The world calls it mergers and acquisitions. This strategy is everyone is quite while you are growing. No one seems to pay you any mind. But once you start growing, they start watching you. The moment you start becoming powerful, you are viewed as a threat or as an asset. When they can’t stand you any longer, they merge with you or “take” you. That’s the taking spirit. That devilish spirit has crept into the Church. Instead of looking at the resources that God has drawn to your house as raw material poised to be transformed into greatness, many leaders look daily at their church’s front door waiting and praying to God to send ready made product through the door. We want other people’s singers to lead our choirs; other people’s intercessors to lead us in prayer; other people’s ministers to preach to us and other people’s leaders to lead us. Trading talent in the Church has become rampant and fierce. But why? Because it has become much easier to “take” than to “make”. Take my word for it; the “making process” takes hard work. It’s tedious and strenuous. The making process takes patience and endurance.
For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.
In Hebrews 11:10, the Bible records that when Abraham was called to do what he had never done before and go where he had never gone, he obeyed and went looking for a city. This wasn’t just any city but a city whose foundation had been marked by a Maker, a Builder- God. The word “maker” in the scripture means a builder, a framer, an artisan.
That’s what sons in the body of Christ need today-master builders, framers, artisans. Those that will “make them become.” The sons of today no longer need the experience of the “takers.” These are leaders that are so inundated with trying to build a dynasty that they have neglected to build those around them. And as a result, they continually pray to the Father for Him to send them “trained servants.” This is especially true in the Western world because we vie for a life of luxury where everything is pre-made for us. We live in “prefab” homes built in factories, wear synthetic hair, glue on acrylic nails, implant silicone breast, get our ordinations and doctorate degrees online and are now trying to perfect facial transplants. Who has the time to “make” anyone become anything? I hear God speaking.
There is a gold mine in every local church. The challenge is that the “gold” is in a raw form in the beginning. They are called the Ministry of Helps. They are the Ephesians 4:12 saints that are to be perfected (equipped, completed, made) to carry out the work of the ministry by the 5-fold ministry gifts (apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher). The raw form needs to come in contact with builders and framers that will make them become something. Every leader must recognize the potential of their ministry of helps (see I Cor. 12:28). God has already sent enough help and resources in what you have already to maximize the level that you are on right now. Your Ministry of Helps just needs to be identified, refined, activated and then mobilized.
The ministry of helps is more than a group of volunteers, more than individuals who say, “Pastor, you can count on me this time,” more than a bunch of folks saying, “I want to try this area out, and if it doesn’t pan out, I’ll try this. Just as long as the Pastors see me, I’ll eventually get to where I’m going!” No! The ministry of helps is not a springboard for someone’s own “higher calling.”
The Ministry of Helps is a supernatural calling. Just what is a “calling”? A calling is a “divine invitation,” to be called forth by name, by God.
People who are called to the ministry of helps are to carry the same burden and vision of carrying the Gospel as the Pastor or other five-fold ministry gift. Responsibilities will differ, but the heart cry should be the same. The sooner the ministry of helps see themselves as extensions of their pastors, the sooner ministries will begin to experience the full manifestation of God’s Presence in their church services. The ministry of helps plays a very important supportive role in ministry.
In conclusion, remember this: when it was time for Abram to go pick a fight with his enemy, he didn’t go hire help. Do you know why? He had built men, strong warriors, trained servants from the inside. They were born and raised in his own house. He probably never prayed, “God send me mighty men to come help me.” But he probably did pray, “Make the men that You’ve given me mighty!”
When Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he led out his trained men, born in his house, three hundred and eighteen, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. Gen. 14:14 NASB.