So, you want to be in ministry? Maybe you want to be in some kind of ministry just because you think it would be cool to “have a ministry” or because you think you could do it better than someone else. Be careful what you ask God for. Whatever ministry He puts you in, you have to be prepared for it. Whatever it is, you have to be seasoned for or in other words, “been there yourself.” God will put you through whatever trials necessary to be able to “minister” to others in that area.
There are too many “self-proclaimed” faith healers, prophets, pastors, evangelists, etc. out there. God did not and would not call them into the ministry that they have chosen for themselves. If you truly want to be “in ministry” then you have to be in it for the right reason and have a heart for the people you are ministering to. You have to have the love of Christ in you to be able to see people through the eyes of Jesus. Then and only then can you effectively minister to people and, in effect, have a ministry (not “your” ministry but God’s ministry through you as a vessel).
The first step to any good effective ministry is being able to “listen.” Most people are so busy talking that they cannot hear anyone else speak — including God. They want to be the focus of the conversation. They are too self-centered and too concerned about what is going on in their world that they do not have time to stop and listen to someone else’s problems or concerns.
If you want to minister to them, you have to listen to them so you can more effectively show the love of God to them. Most people can tell if you are really listening to them or if you are really bored and just pretending to listen to them. But, if you will take the time to listen to them, they will more readily listen to what you are trying to get across to them that will help their situation.
A lot of times, we are listening selfishly. It comes from our human nature. We are just waiting for an opportunity to share our experiences rather than listening to theirs. Sometimes we have to resist that temptation and keep quiet and just listen. This is part of showing love one to another — showing that we care enough to not seek our own will but to serve others as Jesus did.
Everyone wants to be heard. People have a need to be heard. And sometimes that is all it takes for someone to receive healing in their lives, whether it is physical, emotional, or spiritual. Just to know someone cares enough about them to listen to them may be all they need. Ninety percent of all illnesses could be avoided if people would just listen to them. People are just too busy or self-consumed these days to listen to others. There is too much texting one another — which contributes to isolation — rather than face to face communication. Everyone — no matter who they are — needs someone to communicate with — even if they think they don’t. God did not create us to be isolated from each other. That is why He told us not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together (so much more as we see that day approaching). We need to have the fellowship of other believers to help us stay strong in these last days. And non-believers need to be able to feel loved by believers and be welcomed into the family of God. How can they hear without a preacher? And how can they believe if that preacher does not demonstrate the love of Christ to them?
And it begins by listening. If we don’t take the time to listen to others, then how can we expect God to listen to us? That could be the reason why our prayers go seemingly unanswered. That is a really sobering thought!
Selah (stop and calmly think about that)