So how do you know if you’re called by God? Good question.
People who are genuinely called by God to ministry have two things that are true of them. Today we’ll address the first.
1. They are certain of their own calling.
There is a bit of mystery to how this works. God speaks and moves in mysterious ways. But each individual who I’ve known in ministry has a story of how they came to hear the calling of God on their lives to go into ministry.
For my friend Josh, his calling came out of studying John Piper’s Don’t Waste Your Life. He looked hard at what a meaningful life in God’s eyes really is and compared it to his own. He had a great job he loved with a fantastic salary, but in light of eternity, it didn’t seem so significant. Now he’s in seminary; he and his wife are preparing for the mission field.
For me, it was during a summer mission experience where my team served in churches for 10 weeks. Halfway through, the growing sense in my heart was that I couldn’t do anything else with my life…that ministry among God’s people was the place of eternal value for me. It was cemented in a moment of prayer and the scriptures by a poolside in Orlando. I remember it like it was yesterday…my questions and fears, and God’s assurances from his word.
Do you have a story you can tell about your own calling? How specific is it? How definite is it? I’m uneasy when I hear a story of calling that seems vague or unclear. When we encounter difficulties in ministry—and believe me, you will—many times the only things that will sustain you is your inward confidence that God has spoken, that you have heard, and that ministry is His plan for your life.