Growing up in a pastor’s home, I knew that God had called me to ministry since I was in the third grade. I stayed faithful to that call, went to Bible college, and married a fiery young preacher. We pastored a large church, winning awards for our inner-city work in helping reduce crime due to our inner-city work. I thought I was living the life of my dreams, but my dreams turned into a nightmare.
After 25 years of marriage and the ministry, my life was turned upside-down. I went from being the first lady of the church to a divorced, single mom. I went from speaking in the pulpit to selling windows door-to-door.
God asked me to do the unthinkable: become a successful businesswoman. I wrestled with God, begging and pleading with Him not to make me go out to the big, scary world! Thankfully, I surrendered to God’s will and accepted the challenge.
Today, I pastor people as a marketplace minister. I believe that my story gives me a unique perspective on ministering to the business leaders in the community, and I want to share some of what I have learned with you.
Here are some practical ways to activate the people in your church who are called to marketplace ministry:
- Be interested in your marketplace ministers. Visit them on the job site. Find out what unique struggles they are facing on a daily basis. Find out where they shine at their job.
- Affirm their calling to Christ and their anointing to do their work as unto the Lord and the importance of what they do in service to the Lord and others.
- Seek to understand the marketplace ministers in your church. What are the ethical issues they are facing at their job? How does it impact their relationships? What are the financial implications of taking a stand for their faith at work?
- Equip them with a biblical foundation so that they are prepared to share their faith in an inviting way.
- Teach them how to use their testimony to create an open door and possible invitation to church.
- Ask them about their vision to see the Kingdom extended in and through their business and/or work life.
- Cast the vision that God has given to you for your city so that they can partner with you to bring that vision to fruition.
- Strategize with them on how to disciple their co-workers and what part you would like to play in that process.
- Recognize the anointing on their life and encourage them often.
We would love to hear from you. What are the ways that you have activated marketplace ministers?