Thursday, March 24, 2011

Performers or Ministers?

For those who are not familiar with Turn the Tide Ministries, we are a Missionary/Evangelist couple. My husband is a gifted and talented musician who not only sings and plays the guitar, but has written (sometimes with the help of his wife :0) almost 100 praise, worship and Christian life songs. We have recorded 30 of them to three CD's at this point, (if your interested, you can find them available thru our website: turnthetideminitries.com)

Always, the flesh is wrangling against the Spirit and we suffer it's effects like everyone else who attempts to walk with Christ. Clay loves to share the music he's written and I'm blessed to accompany him as I'm able. Several times since beginning the Great Adventure, we've had the opportunity to share in concert venue's and at churches and even in public parks (utilizing our generator on occasion for electricity!).

The wrestling comes in as we try to separate "performance" from "ministry". Are we "performers" of music? Or are we Evangelists delivering the message of Salvation to the lost and the music is an instrument to open doors to that? Lately especially, we've wrestled with these two very different schools of thought. You might think this should be easy, or even, why couldn't both be mixed together? Why are they separate? It isn't easy - because the very thought processes of performers are at odds with Ambassadors representing the Lord Jesus our Savior. I realize that a great deal of Christian singers combine these two ideals - sharing music and sharing the Gospel. However - our call isn't the same. Our call is as Evangelists. Different, very different from performers of Christian music who speak of their faith.

Our friend Pastor Bill put it quite nicely the other day. We were talking about the next "concert" venue we've been invited to - in order to share our music but they've also opened it for us to share the Gospel message. We are to be the "opening" act - from there, there are several well known, large and "name" Christian groups who's ministry IS the music that they will be performing. I don't believe we are performing, we are ministering. Pastor Bill put it like this: THE DIFFERENCE IS, YOUR NOT PERFORMERS YOU ARE MINISTERS.

Very different mind set, very different message delivery, very different lifestyle and focus. And therein is the struggle - to remain MINISTERS while PERFORMING some music in order to REACH THE LOST WITH THE MESSAGE OF SALVATION THROUGH JESUS OUR LORD!

Keep praying for us, and we'll be praying for you.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Transformation-Sanctification; a constant activity

Even while the Lord is utilizing through me all the talent and ability He put in me, at the same time He is working ON me! As I reach out to others, pray with them, pray for them, share the love of Christ with them, preach the Gospel of Salvation – so is my own heart being convicted, set free, changed and transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit working in me.

When Jesus called each of the disciples to BE His disciples, the Bible doesn’t show Him sitting down with each of them, explaining His theology, laying out His doctrinal system of belief or even pointing out to them that they were sinners in need of a Savior! Nor did He show that they were ignorant and in need of instruction. His call was simple, straightforward and FREEING, rather than enslaving. He said “Follow me”, and then shared His life, His thoughts, His beliefs, His doctrine, His very PURPOSE through the actions they SAW Him perform and the WORDS they heard Him speak.

So we, according to 2Corinthians 3:3, are to be living ‘epistles” – alive LETTERS to be read by all men, in our actions, deeds and words, showing Christ Himself through those actions, deeds and words to this world which desperately needs Him and His love.

II Corinthians 3: 2-3 (NKJV) You are our epistle written in our hearts known and read by all men: clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on the tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart.