Called: Discerning God’s Call

Originally Posted on August 10, 2021

Webinar Transcript

God’s call is a profound impression from God that establishes parameters for your life, and can only be altered by a subsequent superseding impression from God. The word called is used in three different ways in scripture. It’s used to describe a universal call to Christian service and growth, a general call to ministry leadership, and a specific call to a ministry assignment. And then in the last session, we talked about three ways God calls. He calls through sudden experience, reasoned process, and the prompting of others.

Now, you’re living in this context perhaps, of already experiencing a general call to ministry leadership or you’re pursuing or considering, or thinking about that. And now you’re also thinking about sorting out, what does it mean to find a specific call to a ministry assignment? And as I’ve illustrated, I’m in my fourth, one of those in 41 years of ministry leadership. And so you may wonder, well, how do you know when God is calling and how you can sort that out more clearly by discerning the recent process or the prompting of others, and occasionally even not being clear about one of these sudden experiences. So what I wanna focus on this last session is what I call discerning God’s call.

I want you to get a mental image in your mind of a constellation, like the Big Dipper. When you think about a constellation, it’s made up of points of stars. Obviously, you look into the sky, you don’t see a dipper, you don’t see a warrior. You don’t see a lion. You see these constellations of stars that when you imagine them, form an image in your mind. Now, that’s what these five points are that I’m about to give you. There are five points on the constellation, they’re discernment points. And so you look at them and as they glimmer and glow and take on dimension, they give you a picture of the shape, a vision or a form if you will, of God’s call in your life.

So I’m gonna put five on the board and you may say, well, do I have to have all five? No, you can have just one. And it can be so overwhelmingly clear that the rest of the constellation comes into view. But sometimes seeing the five points of this and seeing how they interplay together will help you to discern God’s call.

The first one is called inner peace. Inner peace. Now, I mentioned this earlier this morning, but I wanna go back and say it again. A call is a profound impression from God. It’s something that happens inside you if you will. It’s an inner conviction, an inner, an inner peace that comes upon you. As I said this morning, you just know it in your heart. That’s why, when you feel, for example, deeply convicted that God has called you to ministry leadership, and even more specifically, He’s called you to international missions, or He’s called you to church planting in the West, or He’s called you to Inner-City Ministry in a personal or practical way in your community where you live, and one of your friends or your relatives or somebody from your church says, man how do you know that or why are you so confident about that or why would you ever do anything so crazy in your life? And you may have to just come back and say because I just know it in my heart. I just have a deep conviction, a deep subtleness, a deep purpose inside of me that this is what God wants me to do. Now, remember, this is just one constellation point, right? It’s just one glimmering star on the discernment of these five things we’re gonna work through. But let’s start there because a call can be something that is just so personal and so real and so deep that there’s really no explaining it beyond that. You just know, and you can say, I know it in my heart. Okay?

Number two. The second is confirmation by others. Now, let’s make a distinction here because this, in the previous session, I said, one of the three ways that God calls us is through the prompting of others. This is different. This is the confirmation of others. Now the verbs matter. Prompting is if I come to you, confirmation is if you come to me. See the difference? So prompting of others is when someone comes to you and says, I think God might be calling you to do this, or I see this in you or have you ever considered the process stability there, that’s prompting of others. Confirmation of others is when you’re thinking, God might be calling me. And you pick out some people that you wanna go and talk to, seeking what? Confirmation. And who do you talk to? Well, let me give you two or three categories of people you might consider.

The first group of people you could talk to to help you discern God’s call are spiritual leaders or mentors or guides. This might be your pastor or your youth pastor, or a trusted deacon or an elder. Someone that you really look to as a spiritually mature person that you could trust to give you good counsel about this question of God’s call in your life. I’ve used these all my life. When anyone has contacted me about, perhaps maybe leaving the church and becoming the state executive or becoming the seminary president or something like that. I have talked to people that I know and respect and ask them for their input. And sometimes I’ve had people say no.

I’ll think of one example where I went to one of my mentors and said, you know, this opportunity has come up and they’ve asked me to consider it, and I’m trying to discern if God is calling me to do this. And he said, I don’t see it. I was like, excuse me? He said I don’t see it. He said, I don’t think that’s a good match for your gifts. I don’t think it’s a good time in your life to take on that responsibility. I just don’t see it. And I said, okay, well, I hear that. And then he said something so wise. He said, just remember, just because someone asks you to do something, that doesn’t always mean you’re supposed to do it. I thought, wow! I was a young guy. I hadn’t been asked to do very much at that point in my life. And I was pretty excited to get asked, but he was saying, you can’t always say yes because not everything is for you, Jeff. That was discerning from him for him to say that to me.

So when I went to him for confirmation, he actually helped me by giving me some negative confirmation that that really wasn’t what he saw for me. So one person you can go to as a spiritual mentor or a guide, or a confidant, like a pastor, or youth pastor, or an elder or deacon or someone that you really look up to spiritually, you really trust their wisdom. You can go to them and say, I feel like God is calling me into ministry leadership. Or I feel like God is calling me to this particular church. I believe that God is calling me to this mission field. And I just wanna talk with you about, do you sense that or see that? Or how does that hit you? Or how do you feel God is speaking to you about this possibility in my life?

Here’s another group you could talk to. You can talk to your family sometimes. Now here’s why I say it that way. It’s important to talk to your family, particularly as the younger you are to talk to your parents about these issues because they have insight into your life that you don’t have. Now, you may say, well, what if my parents aren’t Christians? Well, my parents weren’t Christians. And when I went to my mother and told her that I thought God was calling me into ministry, she was not yet a Christian. And here’s what she said.

She said to me, she said, “I see that in you”. She said, I see that in you. Now, while my mother there wasn’t a Christian, that didn’t mean she didn’t know anything about ministry or pastors or what churches did or churches were like, she at least had an impression of that. And look at me as her son and she said I see that in you. And she was very supportive of me going into ministry. And my mother became a Christian when she was 60, by the way. But I… When I went to her and told her that, I was all surprised by her response. As a non-Christian, she was encouraging to me because she “Saw it in me” that I should be in ministry leadership.

Unfortunately, as a seminary president, I’ve had to deal with students whose Christian parents were against them being at seminary. One person came to me. He had graduated from a school in Texas with a degree in engineering and his father wanted him to come to their town and take over the engineering business that he had run for many years. Instead, this young man felt that God wanted him and his wife to go overseas as international missionaries. So when he graduated from college, they went home and told his father, now that I have the engineering degree, I’m not coming home to join the family business. I’m going to a seminary and we’re going overseas. His father became very angry with him and tried to talk him out of the decision and resisted the decision and was very antagonistic about him coming to our school.

And when I heard this story from this young man, I then asked the question. Well, didn’t you grow up in church? He said, oh yeah, my father is a deacon, and I’ve never missed a church service that I can remember in my life. And I said, well, how do you explain that? He goes, well, I asked my dad that, I said that very thing to my dad. I said, dad, you’ve taught me all my life about the gospel, about missions and about the church. And I just feel that now it’s my turn to go and serve internationally as I’ve been taught by my church and by you. And his dad said, these words, “Son, that’s for somebody else’s children”.

Now, what I’m trying to illustrate for you is that parents do have a lot of insight into you and whether they’re Christians or non-Christians, I think you should talk with them openly about whether you believe God is calling you to something, especially the younger you are. But recognize that this, your parents don’t have the final say on you following God’s call. When you get to heaven, and God says to you, I called, why didn’t you say yes? You can’t say, well, my mama said no. It doesn’t work that way. You’ve gotta take responsibility for yourself before God. So I’m encouraging you now to remember these are discernment points. These are ways you can discern God’s call. And one way is to talk to your parents and hear what they have to say.

I had a friend when I was in college, for example, who came to college and said that he wanted to be in ministry leadership. He wanted to be a professor. And when he told his dad that, his father was a senior executive of a major company here in America, told his father that, and his father said, I’m not paying for that. You can do that if you want, but I’m not paying for that. He said, you can go to college and study for that if you want, but you’re on your own. So my friend came to college and went through that first year and paid his own way. And it was an expensive, private Baptist College. He made his own way.

That summer, he went home and his dad said, well, what are you thinking about now? And he said, well, I’m gonna be a professor, dad. I want to teach. I wanna be in the ministry. And his dad said, okay. And this was what his dad told him, he said, son, you’re basically lazy. You’ve been handed everything your whole life, because I’ve got a great job and our family’s had a lot money. But you’re choosing a life that’s going to be a lot harder. Ministry, not going to be a lot of money with a lot of struggle. But I didn’t think you had it in you honestly. I didn’t think you’d last one year, but you did. And you’ve proven that to me. And I think you’re serious. And now I wanna help pay for your college because I want you to be successful in what you’ve chosen, but I want you to know the price of it.

Now, again, you say, well, that’s kinda harsh. No, it’s reality. His dad saw something in his son that needed to be dealt with and he dealt with it the best way, he knew how. So here was a non-Christian father being used to help a son grow up and really solidify his call in a way he never anticipated. So, when you’re trying to discern is God calling me, look for inner peace and have conversations with people that matter like mentors and parents.

Now here’s one more to have a conversation with. If you’re married, with your spouse. Now that doesn’t mean you have to be married to be in ministry. But if you’re married, you have to have a conversation with your spouse about God’s call when it’s happening, or what’s going on with you. Now, my wife has been my ministry partner since we met in college. We early on discovered, we both felt a call to ministry leadership and we got married, we got married as soon as I graduated from college. And we’ve been together these 41 years. And through that time, we’ve made every decision about God’s call together. And we’ve had some times when we didn’t see it the same way.

For example, there was a time, right after I planted the church in Oregon, we were only about two years into that church plan, when one day, someone called and asked me if I would come back and be the pastor of my home church, where I had become a Christian. And I thought, man, that’s what I’ve always dreamed of doing. And my wife said you can’t do that for two reasons. One, we just started here with this new church, and two, she said, you’ve changed so much. You’ll never be happy back there. Well, after thinking about it for 24 hours, I realized she’s exactly right. And I told them, I wouldn’t even come back and talk with them in an interview format because I knew I wouldn’t, that God wasn’t calling me to do that.

And then another time just recently, frankly, someone contacted me and said, would you consider talking to us about a different position than the Gateway Seminary? And I said, no, not for me. And my wife said, wait a second now. I think you need to pray about that and think about it a little more, because what they’re asking you to do is something that is right in your gift zone, and they have a significant need, and I think we ought to at least pray about it. And we did. And we decided that wasn’t for us. But once again, I was listening to my wife. I at least stopped and said, okay, let’s stop and pray about it. Let’s think about it, let’s work through this a little bit. I just flippantly said no chance, I’m not interested. And ultimately that’s what we decided, but we came to it together. That’s what I’m trying to say. Does that make sense?

Now, well, if you’re not married, listen carefully. I said this morning that ministry leadership puts a set of parameters around you. If you’ve accepted the general, if you’ve accepted Christ as a Christian, you can only marry a Christian, okay? That’s in the Bible. But if you’ve accepted Christ and you’re a Christian, and now you’ve accepted a call to ministry leadership, you can only marry someone who has a shared call to ministry leadership. But don’t stereotype this. Listen carefully. There are at least three ways that you can share a call to ministry leadership. Okay? Three models that I’ve seen work.

The first one is what I call a shared model. And that’s where the husband and the wife have a shared understanding of their call to ministry leadership, and plan to do similar things together. Like for example, international missionaries often share this, where both of them have a shared call to ministry leadership, and both fellows feel a specific call to a ministry assignment, which is international missions. And they go together and they do similar things. Now, they may have childcare responsibilities and parenting responsibilities and other things, but they don’t share fully, but they do share the work of missions together. They make disciples, they share the gospel, they help build churches. They do that work together. Makes sense?

There’s a second model for marriage and ministry, which I call a compatible call or a compatible model. That’s the one my wife and I have. And my wife and I, as I’ve said, have a shared call to ministry leadership, but we don’t do the same things. We do not have the same specific ministry assignment. My specific ministry assignment is to be the president of Gateway Seminary, that involves, not only the administrative leadership of the seminary, but it involves preaching and teaching and writing and conference speaking and doing what I’m doing here today. That’s what I do. My wife does not do those things. She occasionally will speak at a women’s lunch in our women’s conference or something like that. But that’s not her main thing. It’s an ordeal every time she does it, okay? But what is my wife’s main thing? Anything to do with preschool ministry and training people to do that work.

She is phenomenal at training preschool leaders, teaching preschoolers and teaching people how to teach preschoolers and teaching churches, how to do preschool ministry in really consequential ways. Now, which one of us, excuse me, let me say that anyway, is there higher value for either one of us in what we do? No. ‘Cause we’re both responding to God, we’re both obeying Him and we’re both fulfilling our calling and we’re compatible in this. In other words, we hold hands as we walk along. We don’t do the same thing. We’re doing different things, but we’re sticking together in it.

You know where my wife is today? My wife is in Wyoming helping lead a mission vacation Bible school for a church in Wyoming this whole next week, while I’m here speaking to you. And I talked to her last night and I’ll talk to her again tonight. And she’ll just be so excited because she’s teaching preschoolers all week. God help us all. But anyway, that’s my wife. And we have this compatible relationship and that we do different things in ministry, but we support each other in our mutual calling to the ministry leadership.

And then there’s a third kind. And that’s what I call a supportive call. And that’s where I have a friend who is a pastor, and his wife is a professional. She has her own career and her own responsibilities. And I asked her one time about their relationship and about how it worked out. And we were talking about how it’s a little bit different in some traditional models of ministry marriage. And she smiled and she said, you know, Jeff, she said, I’m not a pastor’s wife. And she called her husband’s name, and she said, I’m his wife. Let’s just call him John. She said, I’m John’s wife. I’m not a pastor’s wife. I’m John’s wife. John has to be a pastor. She said, I’m a committed Christian. I teach Sunday school, I sing in the choir, but that’s what I do because I’m a committed Christian, not because I’m the pastor’s wife. And he has my total and wholehearted support in everything he does as a pastor. And I’m right with him all the time. I’m right here with him. And they’ve been doing this for 40 plus years in ministry. So it’s not a new thing for them. But they’ve a very, what I call supportive role.

Now listen carefully. If you’re here and you’re not married and you get, and you know that God wants you to marry someone as a general call to ministry leadership, don’t stereotype it. It has got to fit one model. It can be a shared calling, it can be a compatible calling, it can be a supportive calling, but listen. In all my years of ministry, I’ve never met a couple who had an antagonism about the call that was able to successfully stay in ministry and stay married. So while you can be shared or compatible or supportive, if either person is antagonistic, it’s not gonna work. Something will be compromised, either the call or the marriage along the way. All right? So, we’re gonna discern God’s call, first of all, by looking for inner peace. Second, we’re gonna discern God’s call by consult, by getting confirmation from others or dialogue with others about it; our mentors, our family, our spouses. Okay?

Now third. Here’s the third discernment point. A third discernment the point is it effectiveness in ministry. Effectiveness in ministry. Now you’re thinking, I am 16. I am not that effective. I don’t even know what I’m doing. I’m just barely starting. I don’t, I hardly even know how to, where I’m just barely trying. I hardly even know where to start. Let me talk to you for a minute. Here’s your problem. You’re comparing yourself at 16 to me at 62. Don’t do that. Let me tell you this right now. You’re not as effective in ministry as I am. I’ll just tell you that straight up. I would hope not. I’ve been doing this for 40 plus years. I’ve learned a few things along the way, and I’m better at it than you are because you’re 16. So don’t compare yourself to me. That’s not fair. Instead, ask yourself this question. How does my effect in this compare to all the other 16 year olds in the world? Let us compare to all the other 16 year olds in the world, how am I comparing as a ministry leader among them? And here’s what you should look for.

For example, are you the one they asked to preach at the youth service? Or are you the one they asked to lead in prayer almost every time there’s a prayer prayed by a teenager in your church? Are you the one that people look to and ask to teach the dorm Bible study at your college? Are you the one that your friends come to for counseling when they’re hurting or when they need to talk to somebody? You’re the one that knock on the door. Do you got a minute? I’m trying to study for a chemistry final. I know, but okay, come in. And are you that person? Are you that person? If there’s something to be organized, like your church is going on a mission trip or doing a vacation Bible school or a backyard Bible club or something like that, are you the one that come to you and say, hey, can you put this together? Are you the one people turn to already in your ministry context and they ask you to take the lead, speak at the service, pray in this service, organize a trip, do some counseling, take the lead in something? That’s what I’m asking you.

I’m not asking if you’ve preached like thousands of times or… That’s not the point. The point is, how do you compare to your peers in ministry leadership? How effective are you at it there? And the reason you’re here on a Saturday afternoon at three o’clock listening to me talk is because probably for most of you, you’re sitting there thinking, yeah, that’s me. I am the one they ask. And that’s why you’re here today because you’re trying to figure this whole thing out because you already have a sense that people are already looking to you to give leadership. Right? They’re already looking to you in some ways to give leadership. You already are demonstrating some effectiveness in ministry leadership and people are already looking at you and saying, would you pray? Would you speak? Would you sing? Would you be on the team? Would you organize this thing? Would you be in charge? Can I talk to you? My friend’s hurting, can she come and see you? That kind of thing. If you’re that person, maybe God is calling you. All right? Effectiveness in ministry.

Here’s number four. Satisfaction in ministry. In other words, it makes your heart sing. Now, let me tell you about being a seminary president. There are days when I hate this job and I would give it to anybody in a second. But those aren’t the normal days. Those are just the bad days. Most days I love what I do every day. I like the preaching, I liked the teaching, I liked the ministry, I liked the people I work with, I like seeing the impact of the organization that we were able to create and generate. I like what I do. And I get a lot of satisfaction out of it. A lot of satisfaction.

You’re already thinking maybe this way. Well, I thought about being a doctor, I thought about being a veterinarian. I thought about being an architect. I thought about being a social worker. I’ve thought about being a school teacher. Yeah, I know. But when I think about being a pastor, man, my heart just sings. When I think about worship leadership. When I think about being a youth pastor, when I think about being an international missionary, when I think about being a social worker, going into downtown and working in the name of Jesus in a crisis pregnancy center in a feeding ministry, in a clothing shelter, or a clothing ministry, or in a homeless shelter. When I think about doing that, it just, man, it just gets me so excited. I can’t wait to do that. It’s like, what makes your heart sing.

Now, let me tell you the opposite side of that. So my son, my oldest son, his name is Casey. He’s like a little mini-me. I mean, he’s not a mini-me. He’s bigger than me, but he’s like, we’re like, a lot of like, let me put it that way. And so as he’s growing up, what do you think people said to him? Oh, you’re gonna be in the ministry like your dad. You’re gonna preach like your dad, you’re gonna be a pastor like your dad, you’re gonna be in the ministry, he’s like, well, okay. Maybe I don’t really feel God call me, but okay. And so he goes through high school, goes off to college. And when he goes off to college, he did what he was supposed to do. He joined a church and signed up to work in the junior high ministry. You know, I mean, it’s what you do. He grew up in church. He loves the Lord. He’s a Christian. He wants to serve. So he signs up to work in the junior high ministry and he’s going to college and working in the junior high.

And after he was there a little while, they call him in one day and the pastor says, we see something in you that we think God might, could use in ministry. Casey’s like, no, pastor, let me tell ya that I am not called to ministry leadership. My dad wrote a book about it. So I’m telling you. So the pastor says, okay, we see that. We hear that, but man, we just, we matter how much you serve and how hard you work with these junior high guys. And we’d like to, we’d like to just challenge you to check out this call maybe a little more than you have. So my son calls me, hey dad, I had a meeting with a pastor today and this is what happened, and I told him it’s not for me. And I said, well, son, we went down this road. You don’t feel like God is calling you to ministry. I get that. He said, okay. I said, don’t worry about it.

So a few weeks later, the pastor calls him again. We really want you to spend more time thinking about this and praying about it, pursuing it. So we’re gonna offer you an internship, paid. Paid internship. We want you to work in the junior high ministry for the next year and just test out if God might be calling you to ministry. My son calls me, dad, I told him no. Now they’re back with an internship and they wanna pay me. I said, take the money. I said I’m your dad. I’m paying for college. Take the money. He’s like, seriously? I said, hey son, what do you have to lose? I said that they wanna pay you to be an intern, do this ministry, to help in the youth ministry and you check out, maybe you’re called. And maybe they’re seeing something that you don’t see in yourself. And why don’t you just check it out? Now I’m thinking to myself, God is gonna call you. I mean, I’m just getting excited and tell his mother, she’s like, we’re so excited. This might be happening. So he says, all right, I’m gonna do it. I said, okay.

So he calls me back a few weeks later. And say, okay, I took the internship. Dad, you’re kidding, they’re paying me. They’re paying me $800 a month to do this internship. I’m like, dude, he said $200 a week there to do what I was already doing in the junior high ministry. I’m like, this is nuts. I’m like take the money, take the money, take the money. So my son signs up, takes the internship, takes the money, supposed to do it for six months, I think it was maybe a year, I don’t remember. So this was September. We get to Thanksgiving. We are so excited because he’s gonna come home for Thanksgiving. And he’s gonna tell us about the internship. And he’s gonna tell us that God is calling him. We’re thinking this could be happening. You know?

So he comes home, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, nothing about the internship. I’m trying not to bring it up. I’m the dad, I wrote the book, come on son, tell me, come on son. What’s happening? So Saturday afternoon, we’re laying there in our lazy boys, watching college football. And I said, hey, yeah, son you have… You haven’t really mentioned anything about the internship. He pops his chair up and says, I’m so glad you brought that up. I wanna talk to you about it. I set my chair up and I’m like, I’m ready. I wrote a book on this. I’m ready. Tell me, tell me about the internship. And he says, dad, I just have one question for you. How do you put up with all of them whining? And I said, what whining? And he goes, and that’s the point. You don’t even hear it. How do you pastors put up with all this whining? He said, I’ve been doing this internship for three months and I’m so fed up with these parents. It’s just whining, whine, whine about how the church is not helping their kid, how the school is not helping their kid, how this is not helping their kid. And I just wanna say, stop the whining and be the parent. I’m like, okay.

And he goes, I’ll tell you another thing. When this internship is over, I am out, because I am not called to ministry leadership because I cannot put up with the whining. And I thought, whining? My son for the time that internship was over, was disgusted and wanted out. He stopped the internship, told the pastor thank you very much. I’m not called to ministry leadership, but I am willing to work with junior high guys and went right back to doing what he was doing before.

My son today is 37 years old, owns a company, and has another job where he’s a consultant on, to another group, is actively involved in his church and serving the Lord, and is a pretty significant donor to Gateway Seminary and very much involved in Christian work. But he is not called to ministry leadership. Are you tracking with me here? That is not gonna happen. And he found that out because he had no satisfaction or joy in ministry. That caused me to reflect on the fact when I was an intern. When I became an intern, I thought it was the greatest job in the world.

In fact, this is gonna embarrass me a little bit, but I don’t mind telling you this. My first check for being an intern in 1978, they paid me $60 a week. $60. And I have a photocopy of that check because I thought it was the greatest thing that had ever happened in my life, that I got paid, paid real money to do what I would have done for free, to be an intern at a church because it brings so much joy to me. You say, why would you fly across the country and spend your Saturday talking to people like us? Why would you do that? Why? Because this makes my heart sing. Who wouldn’t wanna be doing this? This is the greatest thing ever. And if you’re called to ministry leadership, you know what I’m talking about right now.

You’re thinking, yep. When I’m teaching preschoolers, when I’m counseling somebody, when I’m getting a chance to pray or preach or lead a Bible study, organize something for my church when they give me responsibility that says, we see a new ministry leader, we want you to take the lead when that happens, I lay awake at night, just thinking about how to make it better because I love it so much. Yeah, there are crazy days, there are days you wanna quit, there’s idiot stuff that happens and I can get all that. But most of the time, it’s not like that. Most of the time, your heart sings just because you get a chance to be involved. That is good.

Last. Realistic expectations are the right reasons for a life in ministry leadership. The last discernment point is kind of a negative one. I hate to end on a negative, but that’s kinda where we are. If you’re thinking that God is calling you to ministry leadership to fix you, that’s not God’s call. If you’re thinking, I struggle with moral purity, I struggle with my faith and my convictions, I struggle with standing with certain, with keeping my certain standards up. I struggle with these things. And if I just go into the ministry, that’ll fix it all. It won’t fix anything. In fact, it’ll make you miserable. You can’t enter the ministry to fix yourself. You have to enter the ministry, why? To serve others. It’s really about other people, not about you.

So if you’re right expectation is, I’m entering ministry to sacrifice my life in serving others, that’s a good motive. If you’re entering ministry to fix you in some way, to fix your faith issues or fix your moral issues or fix your image issues, if you’re entering ministry to fix yourself, to somehow prove yourself or to somehow earn something from God or some other kind of warped weird thing that really is about you, you will find a ministry to be frustrating and empty, because it won’t solve the problem you’re trying to correct.

These five things are discernment points. You don’t have to have all five. They’re just points of discernment. You’re trying to discover, is God calling me to ministry leadership? Or if He has called you to that, is He calling me to this specific assignment or that specific assignment or this specific field or that specific field? What’s God specifically calling me to do? Look for inner peace and ask God for it. Talk with some other people that you trust and respect and ask for confirmation or not to help get you in the right direction. Look for fulfillment and effectiveness in ministry. What you’re already doing is already effective compare to your peers, not compare to people who’ve been doing it for 30 years. All right? Just among your peers, you’re already the leader. People recognize that, look to you for help and look for you to lead them. And then joy in ministry, and entering it for the right reasons. These are checkpoints to work through. And again, it’s not a matter of you gotta get all five right, or everything’s gotta be perfect in all five areas, no, it’s not that. It’s that you’re using these as discernment points to try to sort out this issue of God’s call.

This site is made possible by the gifts of Alabama Baptists through the Cooperative Program.

Learn more at

Get In touch

Leave us a message