This Seminar is addressed to the men and women who make up the Navigator staff around the world. It is neither a book to be read, nor is it a ministry manual. Rather, it is the distilled essence of the Navigator philosophy in Seminar form.
It deals with basic truths, principles and guidelines which are necessary as we plan and minister together. These are also intended to help us individually, to root our calling and our ministries in the Bible. We depend upon your maturity and judgment in the use and application of this material.
The Fundamentals of Ministry is the product of a thoroughly cooperative effort by the entire Navigator staff. It was assembled out of input from the staff and then resubmitted to them for revision. It has been dismantled and rebuilt block by block as it has been taken around the world. It remains a document under revision, subject to the modifications that will inevitably be made as we gain new insights into how to more effectively fulfill God's purposes for us.
Since the Bible is the source book and authority for the Navigator ministry, we have sought to root these Fundamentals of Ministry in it. Since the Bible is cross-cultural, it also serves as an effective medium of communication. Hence we have, as far as possible, used biblical terms as our means of expression.
The scope of this Seminar includes:
Our Identity: Who are we? Before we can really understand what it is we are supposed to do, we must first define our identity. We do this by viewing ourselves in relationship to God, to His Kingdom, to the Church and its manifestations in the world.
Our Calling: God, being the Lord of the harvest, assigns specific functions to His servants. No individual, or group, is expected to do everything. Consequently, the question, what is our calling, is extremely important. We begin with the Great Commission and go on from there to define our Aim.
Essentials of the Ministry: There are certain things we must do and teach if we hope to fulfill our calling. Circumstances, personalities and cultures affect the means or methods we a employ, but there are a few functions that we want to make sure are present in any Navigator ministry. We identify these essentials.
Basic Beliefs: Just as there are a few essential functions in our ministry, so have we as Navigators always held to certain fundamental truths or beliefs. We set out these beliefs.
Forms: Our few essential functions need to be expressed and reproduced through forms. We look at forms of communication - and examine the use of tools and methods. We then describe an important form: The Disciplemaking Team.
Application: If we do the right things in the right way, with right hearts towards God, we can anticipate progress towards our Aim. We will see results. What results do we desire?
Relating: We are a part of God's Body; of His program. Parts do not find their fulfillment until they are fitted into the whole. How about those we disciple and prepare to labor? How are they to complement the Body? And, collectively, how do The Navigators relate to the rest of the Body?
Strategic Guidelines: Finally, we must recognize our limits. We are specialists. We identify what we will and will not do as Navigators.
Quotations are from The Holy Bible, New International Version. Copyright 1978 by New York International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Book Publishers. Published by Zondervan Book Publishers.