“How then should you go about assessing a “call” to ministry?
Every man is different, and so is every situation.
But in short I’d encourage you to assess your desires, opportunities, abilities, and character—all filtered through the local church.
Do you desire the work (1 Tim. 3:1)? How strong and durable is that desire? Does your desire measure up to the actual work of ministry your own pastors do, or only the fun, shiny parts? Do you want to do the work of ministry, or enjoy the esteem of ministry?
Consider your opportunities. What pastoral opportunities do you have now? What’s there for the taking? Are you the kind of person who creates pastoral opportunities regardless of whether someone gives them to you? And has your church seen fit to give you any opportunities?
What about abilities? Are you able to teach? To lead? To shepherd? You’re not necessarily looking for fruit in full bloom, but you should at least see seeds and saplings.
And consider your character. How well do you embody the character qualifications of 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1? What are your besetting sins, and how hard do you fight them? Are the fruits of the Spirit evident in your life? Are any conspicuous by their absence?
Especially concerning your abilities and character, let the church speak loudly. Consider letting others’ assessment of you outweigh your own, especially if that assessment is from your elders or the church as a whole. Be willing to hear hard things. If you’re ever a pastor, you’ll hear much harder.”
(Photo: Ryan McGuire)