What many people might not know is that I am what is called a “bi-vocational” minister. What this means is that aside from my responsibilities as a church leader, I also work in a secular job full time during the week. There are upsides and downsides to this type of arrangement as a person that is endeavoring to plant a new, life-giving church in Elgin. For one, working in an office puts me face to face with the unreached and various other people who believe differently than I do. In a sense, my office becomes my mission field. Most of us work, at minimum, 8 hours per day. So we are spending quite a bit of life with the people that we work with. This gives us the opportunity to get to know them, their families, struggles and celebrations. On the down side, giving my time to the people God has entrusted to me to lead becomes limited. I simply can’t leave my 9-5 job to visit a sick member or counsel a young person in trouble.

Irregardless of the ups and downs of bi-vocational ministry, I find that it also allows me to remember the particularity of calling of bringing the Kingdom of God to the workplace. Jesus isn’t just interested in full time ministry “superstars”. It was once believed that in order to make an impact for God and live a significant life, one would have to become a missionary.

It’s no longer the case. Our understanding of the Kingdom of God must become larger than this and recognize the fact that God calls us to make a difference within the context of our work. We can become the best doctor, lawyer, teacher or business person and still receive affirmation from the Lord and our church for making a significant impact. We can let the world become our pulpit.

I would encourage those of you reading this who are searching for work, or have been investing in your current career to take seriously your calling in your respective field. Become the best at what you do and let you light so shine before people. When you shine, God shines. Make sure you keep things in perspective and give all glory to God. When he does lift you up, or gives you a promotion in your place of work, find a way to point to Him. Never think that what you do, day in and day out, is insignificant compared to those who preach, teach the Bible or lead churches. If anything, your ability to impact and touch lives in the world is more! Go out there and make a difference!

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