A subtle, but serious difference exists between those who are called to vocational ministry and those who are called to a lifetime of service to Christ.
All believers are called. We are called to be set apart, to be growing disciples, and to use our life in service for Christ’s agenda. It was later in life that I sensed another call, one to full-time, vocational ministry. I always justified not surrendering to this calling with the “everyone is called” excuse. I used that excuse for many years. In my first year of vocational ministry, I realized one primary difference in the layperson and the vocational minister.
Ultimately God’s call is on a person’s heart. He wants control of our complete heart. That’s true of every believer. For the one who is called to vocational ministry, however, God wants our dependence on Him for financial support. As a layperson, God gave me tremendous freedom to work any career. I depended on my job to support me financially. I earned money so I could serve God. I would never have taken a job that didn’t pay me money.
Now that I am vocationally called to ministry, the opposite is actually true. For the vocational call, my career is to serve God. I hope that in that position I will earn money.
Do you see the difference?