Question: How much are ministers who spend their lives serving the church worth to you?
I know it is a strange question but humor me. If you had to monetize it, what would you be willing to offer? Let’s say their impact is average. They are not special, they are just faithful. They serve one or two churches 30 to 40 years. They lead hundreds of services, sermons, lessons, devotions, studies, weddings, funerals, hospital visits, prayers, baptisms, counseling sessions, coffee appointments, capital campaigns, camps, meetings, and beyond. What would you be willing to give to see just one average minister raised up and sent out?
I work daily with several above-average ministers, as I am sure many of you do. Many are Cincinnati Christian University graduates. I know the impact God uses them to make. And I can only dream of the life-changing ripples that cascade out from each one that I will never even begin to understand until God makes it known in Heaven!
As a trustee at CCU, at the end of each semester I get to see a list of graduates and the degrees they have achieved. Every semester, I take my finger and count how many intend to go into church leadership. Last year alone, I’m proud to say that CCU sent out 67 graduates from our undergraduate and seminary programs with degrees in ministry, church leadership, worship, and biblical studies, not to mention all the educators, counselors, and business leaders sent out onto the frontlines of the American mission field with hours of biblical training that will forever shape their worldview. And I always stop and ask myself the same question, “If only a handful of these church leaders end up making an average impact, how much would I give to see this happen again and again?”
After growing up in a Restoration Movement church my entire life, I was a sophomore baseball player at a secular college when Jesus got my attention. It was clear that ministry was His path for me. I chose CCU for my grad work. I was given a quality and affordable education. I married my ministry partner there. In 2012, I left with new friendships, mentors, and an MDiv in Biblical Studies. And most importantly, I had been equipped with the passion and foundation I needed to do the most important job in the world. Today, I would not trade that experience for anything.
So, from me to every man, woman, and church that has invested their resources in our school, I want to say thank you. I stand on your shoulders, and I carry on my shoulders the burden of proving your investment will not be in vain. But I also carry in my heart a burning desire to do unto others as you did unto me.
Cincinnati Christian University remains committed to its core purpose. We are moving forward. We will not stop. The only lid on our continued progress is resources. And I know God has given us together the resources to fulfill the missional imperative of creating the next generation of leaders for the church. So, as #greaterimpactCCU continues to unfold, I beg you to prayerfully consider, “How much is one minister worth to you?” Let’s partner together, pay the price, and reap the harvest. The harvest is plentiful. Let not the workers be few.
Be bold! Love big! Stay faithful! Pray often!