grow where you’re planted

14 08 2008

God has a detailed, perfect will for each of us.  He wants to order our steps and direct our paths.  There are numerous examples in the Bible of God telling someone exactly where to go for ministry.  Here’s a few off the top of my head: Jonah going to Nineveh; Jesus going through Samaria (which Jews typically avoided); Jesus going to Calvary; Paul going to Rome (even though he wanted to visit other churches and he could’ve been freed by King Agrippa if he had not appealed to Caesar).  I could go on, but you get the idea.  These men of God were supposed to go to a specific place.

Some people will disagree with me here, but I think God has specific plans like that for us today.  That is, God may direct you to a certain city and even a specific church / ministry to be involved in.  I don’t think we always have the option of choosing where we want to go or what church we want to be involved in.  God knows what needs are in the Body (the Church) and who needs to be where for His plans to be done.  It’s more than just knowing your general calling (like preacher, teacher, evangelist, missionary), but knowing where God is leading you to be.  Of course, God can give someone a choice, but that’s up to Him.

A point I want to make in this discussion is that when God plants you somewhere, you should stay there until God moves you.  Here’s where I know some people will take issue with what I’m saying.  The way I see it, if God tells you to go to a certain place, then you should be faithful and committed to that place, regardless of what circumstances you may face.  That is, you don’t walk away from your ministry there even if someone offends you or hurts you, or if the pastor leaves, or if you aren’t happy, or if you aren’t being “fed” (which you should be doing on your own, especially if you’re in ministry), or whatever the circumstances.

This ideal is much more difficult than moving and starting over where things are already “better”.  Because even though it shouldn’t happen, we will have to go through church trouble at some point.  I wish it never happened, but you have people of different mindsets and various levels of spiritual maturity, and sometimes people get stuck on their opinion and judgment to the point that it causes division (like I discussed in my last post).  So sometimes attending and serving in church isn’t easy or fun, because of bad circumstances that may happen.  But do the bad circumstances change the fact that God deserves our best?  No.  Do they change our calling?  No.

Please don’t think I’m being judgmental of people who leave their church to go elsewhere.  It’s their choice, and I realize that God can call some people to leave, even in the midst of problems.  But I’ve known people who left because they were angry and offended, and that should not be.  If God tells them to move, they should move.  But if He hasn’t, then they shouldn’t.  Is it that simple?  I think so.  Did the Apostle Paul leave ministry situations because he was persecuted or because they threatened his life?  (One time when he was stoned and left for dead, he got up and went back into the city!  He wasn’t afraid of those who could kill the body!)

I hope that you’ll take a few minutes to ponder this, because we’ll all face division and challenges at some times in our lives.  It’s much better to figure out what you believe in this regard before having to deal with the hurts and offenses, when our emotions cloud our reasoning.

If you have an argument using Scripture that’s against what I’m saying, I’ll listen.  I try to keep an open mind, and I know that I don’t know everything.  Feel free to leave a comment, whether to debate or to expound on what I’m saying.

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2 responses

18 08 2008
Kri'

Amen, bro. Amen…

14 10 2008
Rational Thought

I agree to what you are saying and I do believe that person must reason out for themselves (and of course, God) on ministry. The bible teaches that tough times will come and if we truly feel called to perform a duty for the Lord then we are obligated to fulfill it, regardless of the hardships we face. Granted, sometimes mistakes are made but that doesn’t negate the calling on our lives.
Paul writes that God’s gifts and calling are forever. For example, Peter made mistakes, but God still used him and we consider peter an example to follow.
David committed adultery, murdered one of his best friends, and sinned so badly at one point as to cause the death of a substantial portion of the nation’s population. However, these mistakes did not negate the calling of God on his life.

This gives me hope. because I am a man of many faults and have committed many sins of my own, but the Lord has not given up on me and because of his mercy I am able (like peter and david) to do great things for God. Praise His Name!!

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