Monday, March 13, 2006

The Life More Ordinary

First I feel like I should apologise to both of you for not blogging so much recently. Just didn't feel like it. Its my blog and I'll fry if I want to...

Anyway, I saw something the other day that ripped my undies. It was a sign outside a large Pentecostal church in the area in which I live advertising the Ministry Training College attached to the church. The sign said:

"Live a life less ordinary. Train for Ministry"

Why get annoyed you say? Isn't training for ministry the highest calling one could aspire to? Isn't it a mark of great favour from God? A sign that while we all have a destiny you alone have been called and appointed to make an impact on the city?

No.

The idea that "ministry," whether ordained or church staff, is expressed in its fullest sense by the professional Christians is one I find quite offensive! There is no real justification in scripture for viewing things like that. Now I'm not saying that God does not call people to be pastors or youth workers or children's ministers. I'm simply saying that He also calls people to be dentists, teachers, nurses, fulltime parents, lawyers etc (OK maybe not lawyers...) The call to these things is no less "ministry", or it shouldn't be for a Christ follower who translates their faith into every moment of life.

The great irony with the (now not so) new breed of "independent" and Pentecostal churches is that many of them were started with a desire to rejct formalism and with it the distinction between lay and ordained. But now, a new hierarchy is represented by statements such as the one quoted above which subordinates those who pursue careers outside the professional ministry to a life more ordinary.

Some take it further and seek to cast an OT mantle of kingship over their pastors (many of whom would be considered undereducated by those churches which still ordain) all the while rejecting the lay-clergy distinction even as they celebrate the new breed of super apostles.

Personally, I'm not an ordination fan. I'm happy to respond to God's call to serve as pastor to (not of) the cessioncommunity, but I do that out of a call to that community and not out of any sense that I am necessarily a minister for life (even though I fully expect to be).

I will say one thing that I have noticed...

"Live a life less ordinary: follow Jesus"

4 comments:

servant said...

"A sign that while we all have a destiny you alone have been called and appointed to make an impact on the city?"

That was downright funny! Well done at the disguised mentions :)

And I'm with you on this post.

BJ said...

So nice of you to notice...

Rhett said...

Great read! Keep it up BJ :).

wotsitgonnabe said...

agree with you whole-heartedly.