CHRIS MOK, MTS APPRENTICE (2018-19):
Chris, what did you do before your apprenticeship?
I worked as an engineer in Brisbane – specialising in stormwater quality and flood management. Putting together 2D flood models / simulations were definitely a highlight!
What led you to an MTS apprenticeship?
Were you encouraged by someone? I was convicted that the most important thing in life is for people to hear the good news of Jesus in the bible and believe. And so I loved the idea of being able to read the bible with people as a full-time gig for two years – what an incredible opportunity. I also wanted to see Christians in church, freed from the entanglement of sin, that they may not chuck in the faith, but instead be free to bear much gospel fruit in the praise of Jesus. Yes – I had a couple of pastors, Dave P itt and Dave Abraham, on my back for a few years. I’m very grateful for both of them.
What are 1 or 2 surprising things in ministry you have discovered during your apprenticeship that you didn’t expect to?
I was surprised at the differences between ministry as a layperson and ministry as full-time worker. I thought it would be the same, but it feels like there is more responsibility and more people are affected by my own walk with God – it’s a bigger test of conviction and character than I initially expected it to be. I didn’t think that God would grow me so much through this time. I didn’t think I’d struggle so much to manage my time and rest (there is just so much ministry that can be done).
Finally Chris, what may be in your future?
Serving God in a local church, hopefully bible college.
DAVE ABRAHAM, MTS TRAINER:
Dave, how long have you been a trainer, did you do an apprenticeship yourself?
I’ve been training apprentices since 2012 and have trained 4 apprentices including Chris. I did a part-time MTS apprenticeship in 2005-2006 at Denham Court Anglican Church in South West Sydney and also fixed computers at a school part time. My wife also did MTS apprenticeship part time for 2005 (and then had our first child).
What role did you play in encouraging Chris to consider an apprenticeship?
I discipled Chris for a couple of years. I think I applied the brakes. Chris was keen, he’d been thinking about it for a while. I encouraged him to consider his motives for wanting to do an apprenticeship, the seriousness of vocational ministry, the cost involved, as well as the importance of character. I wanted him, not just to do it, but really consider if this was right for him, and he was right for it. Chris has been a wonderful encouragement and it has been a great blessing to work along side and train him in ministry!
What aspect of ministry (character, conviction, competency) would you consider you have seen Chris significantly grow in?
Competency – more confident leading upfront, more organised, grown in his ability as a leader of leaders, including being able to train, organise and motivate others. He has grown as a small group leaders and in his capacity to encourage and equip young men and empower them for ministry.
Conviction – We’ve wrestled through theology together, reading The Cross of Christ by John Stott, which has been very helpful for seeing the significance of the cross. A growing trust in God and how Chris acts in response.
Character – reliability in caring for ministries and people under his care, faithfulness, initiative in being observant to anticipate ministry needs and serve in ways which bless others, – inputting into the character of others and growing himself
How does MTS fit into your role as a Christian leader?
I’m Children and Youth Pastor at St Lucia Bible Church. My whole role is based around equipping leaders for a lifetime of faithful service in God’s church – to be equipped to raise up young people to maturity in Christ. The way we teach, grow and train people is through the word of God and sharing of our lives, MTS is exactly this, but more intense; there are greater opportunities for sharing life and God’s Word. I can work with Chris together in leading others, and I can give him space as he leads others to learn and grow and develop and gain experience as he leads and serves.
Having an MTS apprenticeship is a lot of work personally training and resourcing – and also extends the ministry incredibly. There is so much more that can be done by having an apprentice, so many more people that can have God’s word ministered to them through the apprentices work.