How to Prepare for an Important Ministry Position

babyArguably one of the most important (and difficult) ministry positions of all time was given to a very young couple who had none of the required experience.

When I say ‘young’, I mean probably teenage.

That young.

When they were first given the job they weren’t even married but yet God decided that they were the perfect couple for the job.

Their preparation looked like this:

  1. Be born
  2. Be raised like any other kids
  3. Learn the family business
  4. Love God
  5. Find a good spouse

As far as we know, that was it. We have no record of any ‘special’ preparation, no big plans to be the most important couple of their time, no intense training courses – they were just a couple of kids doing what kids do.

Then, with no warning, angels start appearing to them and tell them that out of all the people that would ever live, they had been chosen by Almighty God to be the parents of the Messiah.

Yikes.

From that moment, their decisions became harder than most of us could ever imagine and their lives became more important than they could even comprehend.

They were to raise, protect, teach and love the single most important person of all time.

Here’s a quick look at some of the choices they had to make in the next couple of years:

  • Do we get married now she’s pregnant even though it’s socially unacceptable?
  • In a dream we were told to flee to Egypt. Do we travel to Egypt or was it just a dream?
  • We’ve had another dream. Do we go back to Israel? If we do, where do we settle?

This was difficult stuff – and they had no special training to enable them to do it.

It really hit me today as I was reading the Christmas story that Mary and Joseph were just average folk, just like you and me. Yet God used them for one of the most important jobs ever.

Could you imagine knowing that if you messed up and let something bad happen to your kid, the entire world would miss out on salvation?

Heavy stuff.

If this kid drowns in the bath, the whole WORLD is in trouble.

And how do you raise someone to become the Messiah anyway?

Yet God had searched through the whole of Time to find the perfect couple and no matter how out of their depth they may have felt, He knew what he was doing.

As you think about Jesus’ birth today, think about his young, untrained, unprepared parents and remember that no matter how small and insignificant you feel, no matter how unprepared you think you are for what God is calling you to do, God doesn’t make mistakes. He calls the right people at the right time.

You are the perfect person to do what God has given you to do. You’re the right one. God searched and found Noah. God chose David to be king, God picked Mary and Joseph to raise his son and he picked you for the task he’s given you.

You are the right person for the job, trust him.Β All you need to do is obediently listen to Him and walk the path he puts you on. It’s as easy as that!

Question: Do you ever feel like you’re unprepared, unskilled and inadequate for the tasks that God is giving you?

About PeterP

I am a blogger, author, stay at home dad, speaker, web hosting trainer and geek (I was so excited to get an iPad that I actually made up a song and dance about it). I am English by birth, but currently live in California with my wife and our three children. I ran a web hosting business for nine years and found that many, if not most of my clients had never learned how to use any of the functions associated with hosting so I wrote a book to try and teach just those skills. I must admit to having fallen in love with WordPress (possibly a little TOO much) and I honestly find it hard to understand why anyone would use anything different to build a site! WordPress is wonderful! My passion is to help others achieve their goals with their websites/blogs. I believe that, with a little help, anyone can have an awesome site.

25 thoughts on “How to Prepare for an Important Ministry Position”

  1. Great perspective here, Peter! When we compare ourselves to other people we tend to feel unprepared, unskilled and inadequate (at least I do). But when we see ourselves in His light and listen to Him, these feelings go away, and the peace of the Lord will enter in! At least, that's my experience. πŸ˜‰

    1. Peter_P says:

      Thanks, Leon.

      That's a good point. When we navel-gaze and look at ourselves, it's hard to see how we can achieve anything but when we look to God… anything is possible in his strength!

  2. Helen says:

    Yeah. Sometimes I feel like my only qualification for anything is being the sap who looks around and sees it needs to get done and isn't. And trust me, my powers of observation are not superpowers. When I was teaching, I was always in trouble for dusty shelves, or students who wore the wrong uniform socks. If I had any guts, I'd have greeted my principal with "Good morning! What am I in trouble for today, Sister?"
    Oh well.

    1. Peter_P says:

      Hey, that's a great qualification!

      If only other people would notice what needs to be done… and actually do something about it!

  3. Bridget says:

    Pretty much every single day… great post, Peter.

    1. Peter_P says:

      Thanks, Bridget.

      I love your humility!

  4. Great perspective in this post! My pastor hubby and I were just saying the other day that sometimes we wonder why God called us to our current ministry because we feel so inadequate and unprepared. We just pray every day for God's direction and wisdom and hope that we listen to it, don't miss it and follow and obey it! God help us and help our unbelief!

    1. I might add that I think that is a good place to be so that we don't get "too big for our britches" (good southern cliche). As long as we feel inadequate and unprepared we have the best position to be in which is on our knees relying on God rather than ourselves. I would much rather feel inadequate than like I have it all together and I believe that the Lord would rather have that as well. Maybe that is why Joseph and Mary were chosen – because they WEREN'T the "perfect" or most put together people!

      1. Peter_P says:

        EXACTLY!

        If you feel you've got it all under control, that's a sure fire way to tell that you'll shortly be LOSING control!

        Stay on your knees, humble before the Lord and you won't go far wrong! πŸ™‚

  5. jasonS says:

    That’s not a serious question, right? πŸ™‚

    When do I ever NOT feel that way? I am thankful though that I can trust and see the salvation of God worked in my life and through me, How amazing is that!

    I am with you on your thinking about Mary and Joseph- that was the emphasis of my message yesterday. Nice confirmation for me.

    1. Peter_P says:

      Cool. I'm glad that I can give a little confirmation to an uber-pastor like yourself!

      πŸ™‚

  6. Liz says:

    That's why I like the song Breath of Heaven so much. Mary wonders if God wishes He'd picked somebody else, but then she knows that she can trust Him. It really gives insight into what must have been going through her head as a normal teenager. It also drives home the fact that the people God chose aren't special in any other way than that He chose them. God can use me and you and all the other regular, flawed people.

    1. Peter_P says:

      That's why I love the song "I'm special because God loves me".

      We are all special, because we're all called by God to do SOMETHING for him… just generally not what we expect it to be!

  7. Good post, Peter. I wonder… if we do feel qualified for the work we're doing if that doesn't mean we're not listening to God or following Him. If we do things we're qualified for, this we can do on our own, then we get the glory not God. But for God to be glorified, He has to do things through us that are bigger than we can do ourselves. I believe God wants to do this through every one of us.

    1. Peter_P says:

      I think you're right, Paul. In fact, I said something very similar when I shared this with a group this weekend.

      However… I do think that sometimes God gives us things that we can feel qualified with, for a whole host of reasons, one of which is to learn to give praise to him even when we feel that we did it in our own strength.

      Learning the humility to truly say that everything we are capable of, every gift and ability we have is given to us by God is as essential as learning to step aside and let God take control!

      1. Hmmm, that's true. Good point.

  8. @PrairieLady says:

    Awesome post, and so relevant for my life right now as I am about to embark on a book writing journey! I'm excited, but feel so inadequate. I have no training … nothing but a calling. This was great encouragement. Thanks so much!

    ~Brenda

    1. Peter_P says:

      Thanks, Brenda.

      I'm looking forward to hearing about your book writing journey!

      Remember there's plenty of people around who can offer advice/encouragement!

  9. Peter_P says:

    Thanks, Brenda.

    I'm looking forward to hearing about your book writing journey!

    Remember there's plenty of people around who can offer advice/encouragement!

  10. WONDERFUL photo. Absolutely marvelous and insightful application. Yes, I absolutely feel inadequate, often. Why? Why, why, why!? I carry in the temple of myself the power of the Holy Spirit, not "God with us" but "God in us"—enabling all He calls us to do. Did I mention my appreciation for your application?

    And it's silly of me to bring up this trivial point, but …

    Could you imagine knowing that if you messed up and let something bad happen to your kid, the entire world would miss out on salvation?

    Can we say "thinking" instead of "knowing"? I suspect people with sufficient faith to be entrusted with raising Jesus believed in God accomplishing His purpose.

  11. Peter_P says:

    πŸ™‚ Oh now THAT's just being picky!

    As I read the stories that mention Mary in Jesus' childhood, I wonder if they actually really understood.

    Mary pondered things in her heart a lot and when Jesus got left at the temple and they went and found him, it didn't seem like they comprehended why he would be there.

    That line about the bath was more for comedic effect than anything else. I don't believe for one moment that God would have let anything fatal happen to Jesus before the right moment!

    1. My point exactly. If you don't believe it, why would they?

      And hey, didn't I use the word 'trivial'?

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