Leadership in Ministry Class

Leadership in Ministry Class

I am Christopher Wooden from the United States of America, a Christian Leaders Institute student. The leadership in ministry class at CLI was timely for me. It provided information and skills that I need now and in the future. I plan to return to the CLI classes for information and motivation. The lectures and the chapters from the book on Paul and his missionary work were excellent. This will serve me in my calling as we advance.

My Journey

I recently moved from a rural area of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to a more populated area of the Lower Peninsula. My initial plans were to continue taking classes, support a local pastor, or possibly get ordained and help a church that could not afford a pastor. Then, as they often do, things changed. We moved downstate because my wife’s remote job wanted her closer to their Grand Rapids, Michigan, offices.

Therefore, we found ourselves looking for a church in a new area. We started attending a United Methodist Church close to us in our new community. However, we found they were in a bit of crisis and conflict as they left the denomination and joined the Global Methodist Church. My wife and I were unhappy with the UMC’s direction theologically. So, we realized we could help as we were also excited about the new direction of the GMC. When I saw the issues they faced and the fact they accepted us right away, I knew taking the leadership class would help move this dying, split church in a new direction.

New Direction

With the lessons of the classes and the help of the retired pastor, who still covers the church, I could talk about things like vision and mission statements. The classes gave me a framework for talking intelligently about how to renew the church and reach the community we serve. I now lead a committee on Natural Church Development and fold in the teachings from the leadership in ministry class to move us forward. People are starting to get a vision for the future and are smiling again.

We also have a new “Outreach and Hospitality” committee, which my wife and I head. We have changed the vestibule area to be more welcoming by adding a welcome center staffed by a greeter with information and treats for everyone. Some community outreach programs are already being put together. There is a sense of excitement as a few new people have already started to come. This, and much more I will not go into now, is an offshoot of the information from the leadership class and how it motivated me, taught me, and gave me a vision for the future.

Hospice Chaplain Ministry

I am still working on a more precise calling. However, serving the church and the community with the skills I am gaining and the confidence that brings for the glory of Jesus Christ is enough for me. I am leaning towards becoming a Hospice Chaplain since part of my volunteering with my local church has been the assisted living home. Furthermore, my wife has a heart for older people as well. Her current job is to provide online help for older people through the insurance company where she works. I will press forward, let God open the doors, and serve where he calls me.

The only challenge I am currently facing as I pursue ministry is time. Working 50+ hours a week and helping with the various ministries makes it harder to expand and do as much as I want. My heart feels for the bi-vocational ministers as life can pinch. Wanting to give the best to the Lord and the people looking to you for ministry and being a faithful employee can cause anxiety. Also, I fit the classes in as I practice what I am learning. It is all joy, though.

Vision and Mission and Dreams

This class’s most essential and serviceable insight is the importance of a vision and mission for ministry leadership. It sounds like a simple concept. However, knowing the steps behind having an effective one and the steps to make it happen are all the difference. I also liked the idea of “S.M.A.R.T.” goals. Many years ago, I had heard of this idea but had forgotten it. I now have the formula burned into my mind and will look to it often.

My ministry dreams for the future are to be in a leadership position where I can lead people to Jesus Christ, help them to grow deeper in their relationship with Him, and then reproduce that walk with others. I am not sure what shape that will take. However, I am open to anything that advances the kingdom of Christ, so I will keep working for Him and follow where He leads.

Register a Study Account

Register for a free study account, which will automatically enroll you in the Getting Started Class at the Christian Leaders Learning Platform. The Getting Started class will take you less than an hour to complete.

When you log in to the Learning Platform, you will notice that the Getting Started Class automatically appears on your dashboard.    

The Getting Started Class will orientate you to the Christian Leaders Learning Platform and the Programs offered, including:

  1. Ministry Awards, Certificates, Diplomas, and Degrees with the Christian Leaders Institute.
  2. Minister Credentialling (Ordination) with the Christian Leaders Alliance, including local Soul Center registration possibilities. 

Note: You can enroll in tuition-free courses or mini-courses immediately without finishing the getting started class.  

Find out more about women in ministry here.