Launching an Online Ministry
It was a deep longing in my soul that led me to start an online faith based website in 2016.
At the time, this was all new to me because I knew very little about ministry work or the technology it took to do it online. However, when a life changing moment gave me an unexpected call to serve the Lord I literally jumped in with both feet. When starting this ministry I had to first ask God to take away any selfish ambition and ask for an earnest desire to glorify Him only.
What I’ve learned in four years is that it’s never about us but rather about the God we serve. Our steps will be directed through Him and in Him — we only have to ask. His ministry is at work, and when we walk in it, our actions will bear fruit and have no bounds. A week doesn’t go by where I don’t ask him to cleanse me, guide me, and direct me. You see, the greatest realization throughout this journey has been that I can’t do this ministry on my own. I continually remind myself that God qualifies the people He calls – He doesn’t call the qualified. He seeks those who are available, not just those who are able.
Challenges, Mistakes, Lessons
I’ve learned a lot on this journey — I’ve faced a number of challenges and made my share of mistakes. Here are just a few.
- Keep your expectations in check. Don’t expect your friends and family to support what you are passionate about because they may not be. It’s not what they’ve been called to do, so don’t take it personally. The real answer is to find the people that you can serve. That’s when the real satisfaction comes and you see the fruit of what you have accomplished through God for others. When I hear from women in the community stating how this ministry has lifted their hopes, that is worth all the effort, sacrifice, and passion it requires. That’s also when we know deep within ourselves that God is with us.
- One trap that you mustn’t fall into is talking more about what you’ve been called to do and what you want to build more than whom you’re serving.
- When things get tough (and they will), be patient and stay in prayer rather than overreacting to unforeseen setbacks.
- Don’t be afraid of mistakes and failure – they will give you opportunities to dig deep within yourself to learn and grow. Get up, sweep the dust from your knees, and keep moving forward. I read once “failure is only failure if you quit.”
- Consistency matters. One of the most important things I’ve learned is that even in the midst of setbacks and mistakes, staying consistent is the key to maintaining forward momentum!
When we let go and passionately ask the Lord to take over, that’s when the “divine miracles” occur. The people and opportunities the Lord will bring to you are endless. Some blessings will be big, some may be small, but they are all from God and they are all important. It might be a website developer helping you with your website who believes in your ministry and does it for half the cost. Or someone who says let me volunteer to work in your office one day per week. Or on a day you want to give up, someone reaches out to say I love what God is doing with your ministry because it’s helped my wife through a difficult time.
Be open and earnest to follow God’s guidance to opportunities and treasures you never could imagine.
Someone asked me recently what I thought the key to a successful ministry was. I believe truly successful ministries are simply divine callings worked out in our lives. Any job can become a ministry as long as you make God the priority and focus.
Whatever your talents and abilities, God can use them. When we allow the Holy Spirit to move through us, God uses our gifts and resources to accomplish His work in the world. That’s the essence of a successful ministry and or career.
You may already be in the spot where God wants you, whether you’re a teacher, an artist, an engineer, or a CEO, that is your ministry. No relationship, circumstance, or activity is random when you follow His will.
Ask yourself this question: What is the fear keeping you from His call on your life?
Fear of failure?
Fear of being inexperienced?
Fear of (blank)?
What I’ve learned is if we lean on our own understanding rather than trusting God with all our hearts (Proverbs 3:5), we will never be ready enough, qualified enough, or experienced enough to accomplish what God calls us to do. God calls us when He is ready, not necessarily when we are.
Finally, these five words have guided me during my journey and hopefully they will speak to you:
In the end, our faith is about hearing God’s message, serving His will, and serving each other. I’ve learned there is work to be done, whether we are reaching 1 person, 100 people, or 10,000. While I continue growing and moving forward with each passing day, I realize that if we are to truly follow God’s will, we must let go of our fear and hesitation — simply trust.