God’s Call, Your Call, or the Church’s Call? Part 1
Many times, IFB churches make it so obvious that autonomy and indigenous, as it relates to the call of God on a church member’s life, is under their complete control.
This begs the question of “who’s call is it anyway?” It’s so unfortunate that IFB churches have become so controlling that men and women, with God’s call on their lives, are held back because of selfish and cliquish approaches. The result is men and women with God’s call and without the backing and support of the church, try to step out by faith anyway. Kind of like a toddler with a desire to walk and possessing the strong desire to walk, with no one to help. Of course, the spiritual maturity level of an individual affects the first step or the courage to even take the first step. However, it’s encouraging and uplifting when the brethren are there to root for you.
So, who has responsibility for God’s call? (Romans 11:29 “For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.” (READ COMPLETE CHAPTER)
In my life, I answered the call to preach nearly 20 years ago. I did the right thing by making the call public as a testimony in front of the church. What was the result? I was forgotten! I received no guidance, support, or help in getting behind the pulpit, counseling, licensing, or ordination. God does the calling and the Holy Spirit sends.
What has happened these many years later? The burning in my soul has never left. I, daily, live with the battle between failure and the fact that the local church dropped the ball. Sure, I can force open doors and step out, and I may yet, but the desire is to work through the local church. By the way, I do believe in local church authority. Let me say this, so I can get off “me;” dear brother or sister with God’s call on your life; don’t be discouraged, claim Psalm 55:17, continually share with God your desire to be obedient, look for open doors, and with importunity challenge your Pastor and church to support your call. I know what you’re going through!
Ephesians 4:11,12 “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:”