Ministry, my calling

I used to think my calling to ministry wasn’t valid because as a woman how could it be. Now I think when God calls you obey.

Ministry When God calls Obey

When I was three I made a deal with God. If He gave me 100 Bible’s I would travel to Africa and pass them out.

When I was six I tackled the bully on our street, stuck my finger in his face and told him to repent.

When I was fourteen I knew God would send me to India to follow in the steps of Amy Carmichael.

By the time I was eighteen I knew I was headed to seminary, hadn’t figured out which college yet but that was just a stepping stone anyway.

A year after seminary, door after door slammed shut and I realized women aren’t called to ministry. They have to fight for it, and I wasn’t interested in fighting. Somewhere after six I lost the motivation to tackle the bully.

I fell back to saying if God wants me in ministry He’s going to have to give me a burning bush, He’ll have to call me like Moses or meet me on the road like Paul… but since he doesn’t do that for women I was off the hook.

I tried to serve in supportive roles but found no fulfillment. Still when asked why I wasn’t pursuing ordination or a pulpit my answer was always women can’t. I didn’t even bother doing the theological research, I’d been told over and over again I couldn’t and fighting for it frightened me. I was content to sit in my misery and ignore the calling placed on my life.

I do not remember a time in my life when I did not believe in Christ. I’ve had my share of darkness, doubts, and struggles. If you’ve followed this blog or read my new book, Finding Joy, you know that my daughter’s cancer spiraled me into a world of doubt and anger. It wasn’t His existence I doubted, it was His love.

Over the last few years I’ve begun discovering nuggets in Scripture affirming that God does in fact call women to leadership positions, and reaffirming His call on my own life. Currently I am blessed to be in a congregation that values women in leadership and I am so grateful. I am not seeking a pulpit, or ordination, though that journey may lay in my future. For now I simply am using the gifts I have (writing and speaking) to share the love of Christ with those I know.

His call on my life to do ministry is evident. When I am not pursuing ministry, even when it requires a fight, I feel empty and unfulfilled.

What is it in your life that God has called you to do? Are you doing it?

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This blog post is a part of author Sarah Bessey‘s synchroblog based around the prompt “I used to think ______, and now I think ______”. Click here to read others’ responses.

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11 thoughts on “Ministry, my calling

  1. Love this..can’t wait to read more. So glad we found each other. Going to check out your book as well. I coach all about moving forward and getting out of your comfort zone..looks like you have done that ( the coaching stuff is on my other website yourupsidedownlife.com.

    Good luck to you!

  2. Thank you for sharing this. I still wonder sometimes what it is I’m called to, so for now I’m just doing the small things that fall into my path.

  3. Oh, the six-year old you was tough!! I appreciated learning more about you here Hope! I’m still figuring out what God would have me to do – not as a woman – but as a follower of Christ. Stories like yours help me keep plugging along. Thanks!

  4. Loved this, Hope. What a journey you’ve been on – and I can tell it isn’t anywhere near over yet. You might be surprised by where you land but it’s plain to see that God is at work in you and through you. Blessings!

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