I had a great time at the Harvest Network Leaders Gathering that was held at River Church in St Neots. Rob McFarlane spoke about preaching as well as opening the afternoon session up for ministry reports, testimonies and prayer.
I had a great time worshiping together and getting to know fellow labourers for Christ in the area and nation.
It was an encouaging day and I was pleased that I went.
Something I learnt on the day was put to good use the following day as I ministered in Derby.
On Saturday I attended the Harvest Network event hosted by Rob McFarlane and River Church in St Neots. It is a great opportunity for independent (or ‘free’) churches and ministries to get together, share and encourage one another as well as offer support where they can.
During the event, Rob spoke about preaching and one of the points I took away was – if you are invited as a guest to minister at somebody else’s church it is important that you honour them and their traditions. I suppose it is like when Paul said in his first letter to the Corinthian church:
“19 Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20 To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21 To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. 23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.”
1 Corinthians 9:19-23
This includes: sticking to the agreed upon theme or passages of Scripture for the sermon (if you are preaching), following any sort of dress code (if there is one), not running over your allotted time slot.
The following day I had been invited to minister at a lovely church in Derby. Their heart for the gospel is apparent, however their style and way of doing things is not what I am used to. But the lesson from the previous day rang in my heart ‘ honour the house you have been invited into’.
So I dressed smarter than I usually would – I had some experience of this denomination before so I knew what to expect.
I sat in the seat at the very front of the hall, next to the pastor’s ‘special’ chair – when invited to do so.
I stuck to my agreed upon ministry: the All Things New tour, where I share songs and testimonies.
And I stuck to the allotted time slot.
Respecting those you have been invited to minister to shows not only that you respect them, but that you are willing to meet them on their terms. Coming to share the gospel with an attitude of humility and servant-hood is much more likely to get a warmer reception.
So thank you, Rob for those wise words and thank you RCCG Solid Rock Derby for being such gracious hosts.