Being in a ministry is one of the most fulfilling yet demanding careers. Nevertheless, unlike others, you do not choose this profession on your own. It is the ministry that decides to choose you. In the bible, it says that Jesus is the church’s head (Colossians 1:18). And Jesus said that only He could choose who can enter full-time ministry (Ephesians 4:10-11).
How Do You Know God is Calling You?
God is dealing with us individually, so everybody has their own faith and path. Therefore, how you receive the calling for the ministry could be different from how others receive theirs.
However, there is always a pattern designed for the people who God is calling. Eventually, you will know that you are being called by revelation, but here are the other signs that can help you to notice if you are being called.
1. Manifestation of spiritual gifts
When you are called to ministry, there are divine gifts that will manifest in your life. The gifts will run to you effortlessly and naturally. Sometimes, because it is so natural to you, you will not notice that you are flowing in grace–but others will notice it. So, what are the examples of having spiritual gifts?
For instance, you could have been anointed to be a teacher or preacher of God’s Word. Others may tell you that you are efficient at preaching the Scripture. Or maybe you have the gift of discernment. You could have the ability to perceive things that are not easy to be seen with natural eyes.
2. Having a greater desire for God and His ministry than average Christians
You will know that you are called if you have a hunger for the things of God–a hunger that ordinary Christians do not have. In short, it is more than attending church for you. You are willing to sacrifice everything for the sake of knowing God more and serving Him.
You are willing to sacrifice time and resources just for the sake of others. Also, you are more willing to chase or pursue the will of God, while others are just having fun. Plus, you are willing to be disciplined when you have done wrong.
3. Receiving the calling supernaturally
God calls people in different ways. Some received their calling through prophetic words or confirmation. You may receive through dreams or in different ways. However, sometimes God will convict you through the Scripture. There can be a passage that can get your attention, and you can feel that it is the sign.
God’s calling will mark you through the rest of your life. You will always be convicted of it until you respond to that call. If you disregard it, you cannot be in peace. But, on the other hand, if you accept it, everything will fall into the right place. You will always find happiness, satisfaction, and peace when fulfilling it.
4. Having persistent thoughts
It is just like a thing or a song that keeps coming back into your mind. The tenacious voice of God will come up now and then, and it will become stronger. Wherever you are, and whatever you do, it will just pop up in your mind.
Probably, you keep ignoring the call. Nevertheless, God is so patient, and He will keep offering you different call-in ways until, finally, you feel like you want it already.
5. Hardwired for the ministry
Before you were born, you were destined before for the ministry. So, if you received the calling, it means that this is your destiny. Right from the start, you will be given the characteristics needed to fulfill that call.
For instance, if you are called to be a pastor, you will have that innate trait to lead and care for others around you. You may also be skilled at encouraging others with God’s Word. On the other hand, if you are called to be a missionary, you will always be thinking about winning souls for the Lord. Or if you are called to be a Sunday School teacher, you probably have that charm that makes kids comfortable with you.
6. Given the first step
As you continue to desire to follow God’s will, He will reveal to you the first step. Like Moses, God instructed him to present himself before Pharaoh, so he could lead the Israelites out of Egypt.
Exodus 3:10 says, “So come, I will send you to Pharaoh to bring my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt.”
It will be the same with you. He may not talk to you with an audible voice, but God will lead you to the first step. It could be through His Word, the need in the church, or an opportunity to use your spiritual gifts.
7. Called to serve
If God calls you, it means you must live your life as His servant. You are meant to serve Him wholeheartedly using everything you have, including your time, resources, skills. Of course, since you cannot serve God physically, you will have to do it by serving His church and the people around you–and we call it ministry.
Responding to God’s calling means you become a servant-leader. You put the needs of the church and people before yours. Also, it does not matter where you will be assigned and who you will work it. You must serve with joy, excellence, and passion since you are working for the Lord.
As Colossians 3:23 says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters,”
8. Having peace despite trials in the ministry
Expect that following God’s call would cause you practical concerns, persecutions, and other difficulties. Yet, there is peace and joy as you continue to work in the ministry. Peace is one of the signs that God is with you. One way to know that you are being called by God is experiencing that unexplainable peace as you continue to trust Him amidst trials.
As you keep obeying what God tells you, trusting His provision and protection, you will not be shaken.
Philippians 4:7 tells us that, “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
9. Gets affirmation from others
Another sign that you are called by God is the confirmation of it through the people around you. A person who knows you well, perhaps a good friend, parent, or spiritual director, may encourage you to pursue what you can feel to be God’s call. It is because they probably see that you are fit for that ministry, and they believe it is for you.
For instance, you could have told someone close to you that God may be calling you to serve him. They could respond that they always knew that you can be a good servant of God. Also, they would probably assure you of their support as you step forward. The affirmation could be God’s way to encourage you.
Did you experience all of these signs? Is it now clear that God is calling you into ministry? If yes, you should grab the opportunity and get ready to serve God with all your heart and soul. The biggest privilege that a human can have is the call to serve the King of kings. It may not be easy, but pursuing God’s call will give you fulfillment, joy, and sense of purpose.
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Chinese Translation: 上帝呼召你的9个明显迹象