The whole subject of values is of great value to me. I have personally face conflict of values in my ministry. Unfortunately I learned of the differences too late and understand the great divorce that Malphurs speaks about. Pastor Andy could have been me. I will begin with a definition.
Definition of Core Values
Core values are the primary beliefs that you carry into the ministry. They are constant, passionate, and biblical. Every individual has them. We may not be aware of them or have even thought about them. We have them nonetheless. Those core values are formed through many sources. Everyone is taught values from an early age. Our family contributes to them through everyday life and discipline. Values are observed in the lives of our family and friends on a daily basis. Churches contribute to them through pastors and Sunday school teachers. Schools contribute through teachers and curriculum. Coaches contribute through their practices and games.
These values make us who we are. They define us. They energize us. They drive everything we do. Not knowing what they are in a concrete conscious level can sabotage our ministry.
Application of Core Values to Ministry
Our values are part of what makes us unique. They drive our ministry and allow us to do things that no one else can do for God. However as Malphurs points out, it is to our peril if we neglect differences in our values and the values of a ministry we may be leading.Values of an organization come form as many and varied sources as our personal values. They are held just as dear to the members of the organization as you or I hold ours.
We should endeavor to determine the values of an organization before we enter into leadership. If this didn’t happen, then it should become priority number one. Every effort should be made to determine the values of both ourselves and the organization we lead. Differences should then be worked out as quickly as possible.
My Core Values
I will now list my top six values. This is a difficult process, and one that is still in formation. However at this time the following are my core values.
- The power and integrity of Scripture, the Holy Bible is the inspired word of God and will do as it has promised. “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Heb 4:12
- People are first, Jesus came to minister to people. All the ministry instructions in Scripture are about dealing with people. The only thing from this life we can take to heaven is people. No church can be built without people. Even the Greek word translated church, ekklesia, means a calling out, (A.H, Strong) of people.
- Excellence, “whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might,” (Ec 9:10). Whatever we do, especially in our service and worship to God should be done with excellence. Anything less is dishonoring to Christ
- Simplicity, ”Simply let your ’Yes’ be ’Yes,’ and your ’No,’ ’No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one”. Mt 5:37
- The equality of all people as expressed in James 2.1-8
- We are not owners of property but rather stewards of God property. Matthew 25.14-30
Core values are part of who we are and everything we do. Core values have great application to our ministry. Any differences in the values of ministries we lead on our own lead to conflict. My personal core values consist of the integrity of Scripture; people are first, excellence, simplicity, the equality of all people and stewardship.