stories, lessons, and a lot of nonsense

Being called into ministry is one of the greatest things that has happened in my life. Not everyone can say that they get paid to do what they want. If I inherited enough money that I never had to work again, I’d still be the youth and children’s pastor at KCC. I’d just be pro bono. So if you’re looking for a way to bless KCC financially, maybe you would consider giving me millions of dollars.

At different times throughout my very early teen years, I thought that maybe I should go into ministry before God ever called me, because it was kind of trendy in our youth group – it would increase my status – but since God never said anything, I let it go.  I still remember when I first heard God telling me that He did, in fact, want me in His employ.     I remember our conversation well. Initially, I wasn’t into the idea of taking a youth pastor’s salary, because I had my heart set on being a successful, wealthy lawyer.  Once I accepted that He wanted me to be a youth pastor, I began to get nervous. I wasn’t nervous about any of the hardships I would experience if I made it to the pastorate, though.  I was a young teenager and had no idea that I should be expecting that, anyway. I was nervous about never making it. I wanted to see if my calling would dissipate like a fart on a windy day, or if it had staying power.

I had noticed an odd occurrence in others’ lives: God called a lot of people in my youth group to ministry, but He always changed His mind when they got to college, so I thought it was a real possibility that this could happen to me. So even though I was mostly convinced it was God that had told me to be a youth pastor, I stayed silent.  I didn’t want to go in front of the church and admit what I was thinking.  I didn’t want to be applauded and turned into a rock star for a day.  Wait, I would have been a southern Gospel star for the day, because I would have been popularly received.  I really didn’t want to come home from college with a new major and hear, “What happened?  I thought God called you into ministry.”  So it took me over a year to tell anyone other than my parents.  I think my pastor knew I wanted to go into ministry, anyway.  I’m sure my dad told him, because he’s a proud dad.

I wish I had never been afraid of my calling.  I wish I could have felt free to tell everyone.  I wish I would have known God’s voice well enough to never doubt it was Him.  But I have never wished for my chance to go back and go in front of the church.

*This post has been inspired by my reading of Hear No Evil, by Matthew Paul Turner.

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