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The Vocational Call to Ministry

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?  

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Ron Edmondson

Author Ron Edmondson

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Join the discussion 4 Comments

  • Cheryl Pugh says:

    Kind of like the Levites, whose inheritance was The Lord and not portions of land.

  • Rhys says:

    Ultimately God's call can only be to whole-hearted commitment, whether it be in ANY harvest field, and regardless of the temporal paymaster. My required commitment is now no less as a retired person, than that of any other lay or ministerial figure, and is wholly described in the scripture that runs; "the Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want….."

    <abbr>Rhys’s last blog post..How to Know Preaching is from the Spirit</abbr>

  • Pat says:

    Interesting, never thought of it that way. How many pastors have failed because they have depended on their ministry to get them a paycheck. I like getting paid, however, it can’t be what drives me. Great stuff Ron!!!