We Need You...to Go
"How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent?" (Romans 10:14-15).
When you read the title, you probably thought this would lead to an extreme, over-the-edge rant about folks in the congregation. I hate to disappoint you today, but that is not at all what I feel we need to talk about. Nor do I feel it is necessary to speak on anything other than an exhortation this morning. In the verse above, Paul explains the very basics of ministerial operations. He says that folks need to believe, but how can they unless they hear; and how can they hear unless someone tells them; and how can someone tell them unless they be sent on their way...Therefore, those of you who are being called, are passionate about the spreading of the Gospel, and are gifted with such an ability, we--the church--need you to go.
Jesus makes things abundantly clear that the ministry needs people to bring forth the gospel to the people he came to die for, that is, the harvest. This could never be more true than it is today. We NEED honest, sound, firm, and humble minsters.
"Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into the harvest" (Luke 10:2).
"Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest" (Matthew 9:38).
There are undoubtedly people within your congregation who have considered the lifelong commitment to preaching the Gospel. Whether they have been inclined to consider ministry as a full-time "job"(I hate to refer to it as such, but that is how we are structured in the United States), a traveling missionary, or starting a non-profit, these folks need to be encouraged to do so. But how can we know that they are feeling this if they don't say anything? That is the point of this article. If you are one that I am talking about, I hope you are provoked to go and pursue this greatest calling on earth.
Several things prevent someone from trusting in this call. Some of those obstacles are finances, family, doubt in their ability, doubt in their knowledge, doubt of their age, being disapproved by friends, or any other thing that immediately crosses their mind as they think, "I feel the calling to ministry, but…." If this is you, have faith in the feelings that you have.
"And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ" (Ephesians 4:11-12).
Notice the verse says "he gave." Now, if the Spirit of God is eternal, that has to be in existence today just as it was in the time of Paul, since it was God that gave some to be evangelists. This calling you have is not from anyone, or anything else than God--if your intentions are pure.
"But if the Spirit of him that raised Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken[revive] your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you" (Romans 8:11).
It is for these reasons that I have felt the need to stir up some of you to this calling. We have every reason in the world to not do it. It is not "glamorous", it is not financially appealing, you could experience failure, you may feel a lack of knowledge, ministry has to be stressful, and all the while, it is of no glory to you (at least it shouldn't be). You will experience people who neglect you once they discover your calling. You will find that there are those, even within the church, that mock your desire to fulfill this call. It is not "cool" in the eyes of the world. It is not "fun" as the world would define the term. You will be held to a higher standard. You will be judged by God as a teacher (James 3:1). This must be something you are willing to give up everything else to do. Man, you're own family may even disown you because of your newly found, "stuck up", "self righteous", "holier than thou" lifestyle. This is their perspective because they are not secure in their faith and would hope to bring you down with them. This is not of God, but of the devil. If there is anything that I am confident in, it is the fact that no one wakes up one day and decides, "Oh! Maybe I'll try ministry!" This feeling has been festering for a while now. It's time to go.
Be encouraged, all of you who read this and wonder if it will be worth it! Be encouraged to know that God is guiding this calling of yours! Be encouraged that many have led the way before you, and have done so in full faithfulness to God! Your treasure will not be on this earth, nor will you see it in this life, but your treasure will be in heaven. Be encouraged! This is the most noble of all the things you could do with your life.
If this is you, it is time to go. It is time to live according to your calling.
If there is anything I can do to help you on your way, please reach out and let me know.
Until next time...
"Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is" (Jeremiah 17:7).
"For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken" (Proverbs 3:26).
"Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:6).