The ministry of the towel and the basin

A timely reminder as I do ‘important’ things at transform

John Piper writes in Brothers, We Are Not Professionals:

We pastors are being killed by the professionalizing of the pastoral ministry. The mentality of the professional is not the mentality of the prophet. It is not the mentality of the slave of Christ. Professionalism has nothing to do with the essence and the heart of the Christian ministry. The more professional we long to be, the more spiritual death we will leave in our wake. For there is no professional childlikeness (Matt. 18:3); there is no professional tenderheartedness (Eph. 4:32); there is no professional panting after God (Psalm 42:1).

But our first business is to pant after God in prayer. Our business is to weep over our sins (James 4:9). Is there professional weeping? Our business is to strain forward to the holiness of Christ and the prize of the upward call of God (Php. 3:14); to pummel our bodies and subdue them lest we be cast away (1 Cor. 9:27); to deny ourselves and take up the blood spattered cross daily (Luke 9:23). How do you carry a cross professionally? . . . .

I trust that you take this in the spirit by which I have tried to write this. We still need discipline, we must have vision, we will fail if we do not plan, and we must continue to lead, but there must in all of this be ministries marked by utter dependence on God. The Kingdom of God is not advanced with importance nor professionalism but rather with humility.


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