Hope is a beautiful thing but it can be a deadly thing too. Hope placed in the right person or thing can lead to beauty and relationship and trust. Hope placed in the wrong person or thing can be damaging if not deadly.

There are three areas of my ministry that I have given up hope as a pastor and I hope if you are a pastor or in Christian ministry you will give up hope in these areas too!

The three areas I have given up hope are:

1. My Preaching

2. The conversion of people

3. The Finances of the Church

1. My Preaching

I used to have dreams that one of my sermons or a sermon series would be so amazing that it would bring revival. Now this may happen but it is unlikely. I have given up hope that one sermon or series will bring revival or make the church. Why? Because the Bible is clear that it is the preaching of the word in season and out of season that builds God’s church not one killer sermon or series.

2.The Conversion of People

When I started in ministry I thought that all I had to do was preach in a way that was interesting and relevant and then people would fall on their knees and become Christians. How wrong I was. I have lost hope that God works like this with any regularity. No it seems to me that God works through people who take the time to share the gospel with people over weeks and months and years. These people pray and God seems to change lives when we don’t expect it. Certainly God can bring someone to faith in an instant but once again I am reminded of Paul in the Pastoral epistles where he equates ministry with hard work like a soldier or a farmer (2 Timothy 2:1-5). These are jobs that someone works tirelessly for results in the future. This is the work of a pastor who preaches faithfully.

3. The Finances of the Church

I used to have a dream that a billionaire would walk into Resolved and start tithing. But I have lost hope in this. Church finances are built on many people giving in response to the gospel and the vision of the church. Losing hope of Bill Gates becoming a member of Resolved has freed me to focus on making sure the people of Resolved are worshiping God with all their lives including their money.

As a pastor I want to lose all hope in me and my abilities. I want to have hope in God and his word that through the faithful preaching of the Bible and pointing people to Jesus that we will see a flood of people become Christians. And as we faithfully train those people up we will see many churches planted throughout Sydney, Australia and the World!

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