THE TRAGEDY OF THE CALL TO MINISTRY

We just finished an amazing week at Camp! Students decided to follow Christ wholeheartedly. Students were healed. Students were Spirit-baptized. Many were released from fear, anxiety, and depression!

And…a number were called into full-time ministry. I know we celebrate the salvations, healing, and deliverance. But the call into ministry? I can hear it now: “Oh, that’s just an emotional response to camp. They’re just teens. Let’s hope it goes away…”

I think I first realized what serious trouble Pentecostalism was in when I began observing Pentecostal parents (including pastors) standing strongly opposed to their own children entering full-time pastoral ministry.

True, we’ve recognized that all believers are called to ministry, regardless of occupation. And that’s a great thing. But. Some are called to give their entire lives. Jesus gives them to the Church as gifts (Eph4:11).

Maybe we’ve dealt with pastors so poorly that loving parents cannot imagine their children being so treated.

Or perhaps in this day and age there is so little prestige to being called by God to shepherd others, that we wish more glamorous occupations for our youth.

Could it be that we’ve become so comfortable in this world, and so used to the pursuit of financial security, that we forget the biblical teaching that the life lived by faith is the greatest joy and honour of any believer?

Yes – I train students for ministry. No – my well being, financial or otherwise, is not at all impacted by numbers. (In fact, more students = more workload for me 😉

However, I can’t help but feel discouraged when God calls a young man or woman to partner with him in shepherding His church & reaching out to the community, and the student is willing to sacrifice all for that call – but their own Christian families stand most firmly in the way.

God help us.

Acts 13:2 While the Church was worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”

God is still in the calling business.

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