Karen Ellis’ Message at MLK 50

Karen Ellis writes and lectures on theology, human rights, and global religious freedom. She is president and co-founder of the Makazi Institute, which trains and equips the next generation of cultural analysts. She’s a PhD candidate in missiology at the Oxford Center for Mission Studies in England. She also holds an MAR from Westminster Theological Seminary and an MFA from the Yale School of Drama.

Below is her message at MLK 50 on the Great Commission, The Persecuted Church and Racial Unity.

I want you to watch Karen for two reason. 1. Her message is one of the most missionary moving messages I’ve ever heard. One of my favorite lines in this message, “Desperation makes excellent gospel soil.” Glory! 2. She’s a gifted teacher and NOT a pastor, so don’t freak out. I know we live in a place where complimentarianism has been abused not properly defined and worked out inside of the local church. We are complimentarian in the full biblical sense.

Our tribe has too often equated teaching as the primary thrust of the pastorate and therefore kept our women from rising to their God-given place in the church as able to teach without being having to be pastors/elders/overseers. This unhealthy emphasis in our demonination and partner denominations has also led to men who want to teach, mistaking their desire to talk about Christian things for a call to ministry, and then discovering they can’t commit, lead or even be on time thus creating profound disappointment in themselves and in those who invest hundreds of hours in their training. While this is going on some of our women lead well and disciple well and teach well in the shadows or simply are taken for granted for the jobs they do in the church.

The teaching ministry of the church should be carried by everyone gifted by the Spirit for teaching in the fellowship from small groups to ongoing theological and practical education inside of the church. Ephesians 4:11-16 remind us that teaching is a gift that the Spirit gives to the whole church for our building up therefore requiring all Christians to serve one another through Spirit empowered teaching.

Pastoring/Eldering/Overseeing require the ability to teach, but know this: The Sunday sermon is a small component of leading the church. Leadership skills, management skills, organizational management, navigating growth, shepherding people into truth or even harder…from good to better and best among spiritual options…these all take more time than the sermon.

Sunday, Jennifer Jolly who has spoken at First Presbyterian Church, been a panel speaker for local racial reconciliation events and numerous educational functions, will be sharing from Proverbs 31 for Mother’s Day. As a Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary graduate, ample expositor, and seasoned wife and mother, I believe you’ll be encouraged.

Ladies of TRC, be encouraged and lifted up. Men, be encouraged and lifted up.

Here’s Karen Ellis:

<p>Karen Ellis at MLK 50</p>


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