It’s a great thing: That God calls men who are sensitive to his voice.
It’s been said that “God does not call the qualified. He qualifies those He calls.”
Enlightenment from within is so much more important than formal education. These thoughts are for “pastors” with perhaps just a 9th grade education. One we know serves in jails and prisons, another at a community church. We’re blessed to have had them share their heart for the lost.
Often men are called just to “Work the corners of the field”, so to speak. Churches are full of comfortable, self-satisfied tithing regulars that support professional ministry. Yay! Some are gifted teachers. Some regurgitate commentary. And there are some, often uncredentialed, that having studied and prayed, share what the Lord shows them. I love the latter. The word resonates truth especially when true believers seek Him.
“‘When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and for the foreigner residing among you. I am the LORD your God.'” Lev. 23:22
Is there anyone who doesn’t see the ministerial metaphor? We, the uncredentialed have a harvest to bring for the Lord.
“Let your eyes be on the field which they reap, and go after them.” Ru. 2:9.
Are you one who seeks after lost ones, who brings encouragement to the forgotten? Are you happy? We should be so much more than content to serve. (There is no deserving this, man. Only gratitude.)
So, as far as returning to Bible school? Perhaps you heard “No. Time is short.”
Still, do you crave the “respect credentialed leaders expect?” Well, humility is a good thing! I hope we see this clearly. It should be crystal clear. It helps us keep our ears open – tuned both to the earthly cries of hurting people but also to the heavenly broken heart that weeps for them.
“Why have I found favor in your eyes, that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?” And Boaz answered and said to her, “It has been fully reported to me, all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth, and have come to a people whom you did not know before. The Lord repay your work, and a full reward be given you by the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge.” Then she said, “Let me find favor in your sight, my lord; for you have comforted me, and have spoken kindly to your maidservant, though I am not like one of your maidservants.”
God Bless” Ru 2:11-13
Once we were asked: “Where is my ministry for the Lord?” The answer is: What in the kingdom of God breaks your heart?
“So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven.” Neh. 1:4
God uses broken-hearted, unqualified, defective men to minister to broken, defective men. It’s a simple truth. Nehamia was a wealthy powerful cup-bearer to the king. (Many of us who camp in pews on Sunday mornings fit this spiritual profile.) He left the safety of the Kings court and risked it all to correct wrongs in the Kingdom of God. He didn’t go for the paycheck.
Fellow laborers may I just say: I respect and honor your work. I appreciate you. You are not “less than” — you are a son of God, the bride he loves. I know you know this.
It would be such a blessing to hear some of your stories. Thank you for sharing!