When I coach ministry teams my go-to phrase is... "Have you prayed specifically on this?" The more specific your prayers, the more specifically God answers.
Prayer is the beating heart for any ministry. Remove prayer and I promise you pride and self-ambition start growing like a noxious, choking weed in the ministry. Through prayer, it is amazing to watch God naturally "weed-out" and frustrate the people whose intentions are self-focused instead of God-focused.
Satan always comes up where we least expect it. He will come up through the middle of the ministry. Infighting, jealously, suspicion, usually working through trusted sources and when you least expect it.
1 Peter 5:8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
Be on guard and train up your teams to come to you first if they have an issue. Be open, thankful they approached you and listen. If they have an issue, recommend that they come with a suggestion on how to fix the problem as well.
Hebrews 12:15 See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause and defile many.
An evil root can grow up quickly inside of a team. Train your team members to deal with and confront bitterness immediately. You should be prepared to deal with it confidentially if needed and with love!
My prayer is that you are able rise up and shepherd them correctly so their divisiveness doesn't become contagious, choking off and killing the ministry. Satan then has you right where he wants you. Forgive and love each other quickly and deeply.
God assigns us in places of spiritual ministry and leadership according to His sovereign will. When we become empty of self and dependent on God, the Holy Spirit will use us mightily for his noble purposes.
You are not only leading a prison ministry, you are shepherding your team as individuals with biblical excellence. Don't waste the experience of suffering and trials as you do prison ministry. Learn from it.
Consider it pure joy my brothers and sisters, whenever you encounter trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
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