A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life

A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life
I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, –that unless I believed, I should not understand.-- St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109)

Thursday, August 10, 2006

It's the Call

I had breakfast this morning with my good friend, Mike. He is a pastor with many gifts and graces for ministry. Every church he has served has grown in numbers and expanded its ministries. He has truly blessed his congregations.

Mike recently moved to a new congregation and is struggling through new challenges. I have no doubt that he will prevail and will lead his new congregation into faithful Kingdom work, but one of the things we discussed this morning is why we continue to bear the weight of the frustration of ministry, even though we find our ministries rewarding as well. Why do we keep on keeping on when many of our colleagues threw their ministries as pastors, education directors and youth leaders out the window years ago, going on to less stressful professions that paid better? The answer is obvious: it�s the call.

I have taught as an adjunct professor at a seminary for thirteen years and it never ceases to amaze me how many second career students quit lucrative jobs and use their savings to attend seminary. Why do they do it? It�s the call.

Why do missionaries risk life and limb and completely depend on the contributions of others in order to live? It�s the call. Why do parishioners volunteer their precious little free time to the church? It�s the call. Why do people give up vacation time to be part of work teams offering relief to those who encounter disaster? It�s the call. Why do we continue to sacrifice and serve and give? It�s the call of God.

It is not what we want; it is not what we need. It is the call.


Ted M. Gossard said...

Excellent post Allan! Thanks much.

Yes. The call consumes you. It eats me alive. I fear I've failed, yet want to do what I can, with the remainder of my time, to, in God, fulfill it. It certainly never lets you go.

Anonymous said...

Seems to me the call is universal but we, the sheep, owe an enormous debt of gratitude to those of you who heed it and make it your life's work. Marilyn

Allan R. Bevere said...


Yes, the call is universal, but there are those who are separated out for representative ministry. I guess you could say our name just happened to come up.

Allan R. Bevere said...


Sounds like you are obsessed with fulfilling the call of God in your life.

Thanks be to God!

John said...


One year ago yesterday, I walked away from the greatest job that I had ever had in my life to go to seminary and follow the call. How I miss it so!