Issues for the Family in Christian Service

May 15, 2009 by admin  
Filed under Ministry Helps

family-in-churchThe following is a brief look at some biblical guidelines with discussion questions aimed at exploring issues related to family involvement in ministry.

Biblical guidance for family life and involvement in ministry:

Marriage:

  • Basic information on the marriage relationship (Ephesians 5:22-6:4 / Colossians 3:18-21).
  • Pricilla and Aquila as New Testament examples of a married couple in ministry (Acts 18:24-28; Romans 16:3-5a; 1 Corinthians. 16:19; 2 Tim 4:19).
  • The issues of married ministry in the context of Paul’s recommendation of singleness as an easier lifestyle in rigorous ministry (1 Corinthians 7:32-35).

Children:

  • The Christian leader and family relationships (1 Timothy 3:2-5, 8-13).
  • The poor examples of Eli and Samuel raising children in ministry (1 Samuel 2:12, 17, 22-25; 8:1-5).

Discussion Questions:

  • Does God call both husband and wife to Christian service?
  • Does God also call children of Christian servants to be a part of family ministry while they are living with parents?
  • In what ways can a spouse enhance the ministry of his/her partner?
  • In what ways can a spouse cripple the ministry of his/her partner?
  • What are the reasonable minimum expectations Christian people may have for a family who serves them in ministry?
  • What sacrifices should ministry families reasonably expect to make for the sake of their ministry and their “flock”?
  • What are the reasonable minimum expectations a ministry family may have toward their “flock” concerning their care, upkeep and well-being?
  • What are some signals that active, public ministry should be scaled back or temporarily discontinued for the sake of family well-being?
  • What types of training do ministry families need for effective long-term service?
  • What issues should be discussed in line with what individual family members expect in ministry lifestyle?
  • What habits and practices should ministry families develop to show appreciation for church volunteers and faithful members?
  • What training and modeling should be provided to develop the practices of forbearance and forgiveness?
  • Discuss the issues of rest, renewal and recreation in ministry.
  • In what ways should congregations be trained in caring for ministry families?
  • Discuss the issues of adequate (generous) salaries for paid staff; respecting staff time off;  respecting certain areas of family privacy; allowing those in ministry to be “people in process”.
  • What is the role of those in ministry to facilitate or present this training?

Michael Bogart

Michael Bogart

May, 2003: Haiti

May 8, 2009 by admin  
Filed under Missions Projects

haiti-flag1Dear friends,

It is with fullness of heart that we write to report on our first short-term missions project under JARON Ministries. We believe that our trip as a couple to Haiti (May 14-24) accomplished more than we dared hope for. We honestly don’t know how to be brief in summarizing what was accomplished, so please be patient as we try to boil it all down:

Haiti street sceneHaiti tap-tapMay 15-17: We were the featured speakers at a pastors and pastors’ wives retreat, in the Port au Prince suburb of Delmas. Mike’s subject was Purity in Ministry. These men had not looked at biblical teaching on the subject of sexual purity in this type of package before and responded very well. Melinda taught a women in ministry workshop, in which she led a Bible study centered around the challenges, joys and issues related to pastoral families and ministry within the local church. Approximately ten pastoral couples were involved.

May 18-20. Mike was priviledged to be the guest preacher on Sunday at Amitie Christian Church of Delmas. The text was Acts 1:8 “The Local Church and World Missions.” The following Monday through Wednesday: he taught a Bible Survey mini-course for pastors and Christian leaders at the Center for Integrated Development in Delmas. The class averaged about 25 students over three nights.

May 21-23. Mike presented the same  Bible Survey mini-course for the leaders of a recently established church in Petit Goave, 40 miles southwest of Port au Prince. Class size averaged around 20 and provided training for the leadership of this church which has the potential of being a very effective witness in this rural area.

As always, the seminars and workshops served as springboards into other related issues and a chance to connect with dear fellow servants of the Lord for encouragement, fellowship and mentoring.

Our goal is to work with local groups who will be able to follow up and expand on ministry after we are gone. Our hosts were Robert and Jean Vilmenay of Mission to the Americas, and Gillomettre Herode of the Center for Integrated Development. We have a standing invitation to return to continue ministry through these organizations in years to come.Haiti photos

Haiti map

Cultural highlights:

1) Enjoying the very tasty Haitian cuisine, such as delicious fruit, spicy chicken and papitas (fried plantain chips).

2) Trapping a huge tarantula in the “wee” hours of the morning on a trip to the restroom.

3) People and tap-taps (like taxis) everywhere on the streets from early morning until late night. Haitian driving is not for the faint of heart!

4) The poverty and yet general cheerfulness of most of the people we met, along with the serious commitment of the Christian leadership we worked with.

5) The experience of being 50 yards ahead of President Aristide’s motorcade with helicopters zooming overhead, while he was stuck in traffic on Delmas Route 1. The Haitians were not particularly concerned about getting out of his way.

6) Melinda’s dugout canoe ride to a beach near Petit Goave, skimming over coral reefs, but unable to lean out to really see them for fear of the canoe tipping over.

7) The chance to get better acquainted with our friends, the Vilmenays, and hopefully encourage them as they continue ministry in that needy country.

Thanks for praying,  Mike and Melinda Bogarttypical haiti