Self- Or God-Promotion?

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are varieties of ministries and the same Lord. There are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons.  1 Corinthians 12:4-6

What is the difference between self-promotion and God-promotion?

If you are a leader, a business owner, a missionary, or work at a church, sooner or later you must consider what to do about finances.

I’ve run into a few church leaders who don’t promote and confidently say that the Lord will provide. Some of them have been quite successful while others have fallen flat on their bank balances.

I see nothing wrong with promoting, asking for money, or having a ministry by faith sans asking.

Years ago, I read 1 Corinthians 12:4-6.

The verses teach that the Spirit gives you a gift, Jesus gives you a ministry, and God provides the effectiveness. You get your gift from the Spirit, the Lord opens the door for ministry using that gift, while God provides the effectiveness. What do you need to worry about?

The difference between self-promotion and God-promotion is – your peace!

  • I listened to a pastor give a sales pitch (not a God pitch) and thought, “He is walking outside the grace in his life. He hasn’t displayed the skills needed for what he wants to do.”
  • I listened to another ministry leader talk at a fund-raiser and thought, “Uh, oh, she was hired into that ministry to raise funds. I wonder if it is her calling from the Lord?”
  • I remember hearing one leader say, “If we have faith, we will change the world.” I considered, “Did he hear God or is he just trying to ramp up my pledge total?”

I have been involved in hundreds of fund-raisers, capital campaigns, and requests for donations. I did not always think, “God, is this my gift; is this what you want me to do; am I depending on your provision?”

Neither did I always pray about my gifting or ministry calling while leaving the results to God. And when I did not think or pray…

I lost my peace.

There is no greater difficulty than moving from God-promotion to self-promotion and to the ensuing endless appeals for funds, branding for manipulation, and emotional social media strategies.

Paul writes in Romans 12:

For through the grace given to me, I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.  Romans 12:3

Ministry beyond your measure of grace and above your faith grade brings doubt.

Where is God? Why didn’t He answer my prayers? How am I going to pay my bills? Does God love me? Why did He let me get into this situation?

Doubt to questions t0 disillusionment t0 anger – the path of self-promotion.

Calm down! If you have lost your peace, turn back to Jesus. He will provide a way out of your mess.

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