There is no doubt that ministry is a calling.
I can hear the argument that ministry is a job. And that is true.
it is actually more of a J-O-B than most people realize. Ministry is demanding and demands maturity.
I have been a pastor for 37 years, and I have never considered ministry a job and never felt like a job. As a whole, I have loved my job and my calling. I work long hours, and my perspective is old school. I rarely feel off work, and I am always aware of my responsibility. I consider myself a servant leader who orders my life with a high commitment and purity.
But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others, I should be disqualified. (1 Corinthians 9:27, NKJV)
I believe my life and my message must be congruent. Do I fail? Yes. Am I perfect? Rarely or never. And when I think I am perfect, it is a greater indication I’m not. I am a fallen man with a sinful nature who needs a Savior.
I am also not the Savior and have no interest in creating dependency from others on my gifts, counsel, or perceived wisdom. I am also not dependent upon people for my self-worth or significance, and I get that from God.
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15, NIV)
What is true maturity?
The most extraordinary maturity is knowing your need for humility. There are moments I display great maturity and handle situations with grace and ease. In other moments I respond gruffly and emotionally. I even know I shouldn’t, but …
Ministry demands maturity. Some days I am emotionally mature and ultra-confident, and the mirror catches my extra pounds or not-so-great clothes; on other days, my confidence spirals into oblivion. The truth is, I desperately need God on both the good days and the bad. Which day is better? The day I let the Spirit help me is the best of days. But, that is rarely the day I feel best!
Maybe the greatest maturity is the constant awareness of our need for God and the constant humility to let the Spirit lead us daily.
I am sure we need the Spirit more than confidence in ourselves.
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