Matters of Faith: When Your Ministry Chooses You

By Reverend J. Loren Russell, BA, MDiv

‭‭Romans 12:4-8‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬ NKJV‬‬‬‬
“For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.”

‭A few weeks ago, I was sharing with an association of Minister’s my growing involvement helping to keep young people alive, safe and out of prison. I told them how the Lord lead me more than seven years ago to birth a ministry called “Back in Stride Again.” What began as a ministry to help ex-offenders start their own businesses, is now an effort to help prevent young people from ever going into the prison system. ‬

If someone had told me that this would be an area of ministry that I would be involved in, I would have surely thought that they had lost their mind, or at the very least, they didn’t know me very well. In retrospect, I can see the hand of God orchestrating every single thing from the very beginning. From the day I ran into an old friend from elementary school who had been incarcerated for 25-years, to the police department asking me to be involved with their program designed to minimize violent behavior among gangs, cliques, crews, or whatever they might call themselves, I have seen that I have been chosen by God to help change the choices these individuals make. The truth of the matter is, I didn’t choose this ministry, this ministry chose me!

When your ministry chooses you, it will be as clear as day. And it could be anything. It could be a new and different way to approach people to share the love of God, or it could be the same ministry someone else has been given, to help them with the ministry the Lord laid on their heart. Whatever ministry chooses you, it will be an assignment designed specifically for you with unique gifts that will be a blessing or benefit others. Paul makes that clear in his letter to the Romans when he says, “…, let us use it in our ministering.” He also emphasizes it in his letter to the Ephesians (4:11-12) when he says, “And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.”

Gospel artist Luther Barnes penned a song called “It’s a Good Thing to be Chosen” whose chorus says, “It’s a mighty good thing to be chosen by God. It’s a mighty good thing to be chosen to serve. So don’t ever complain, when He calls your name. The job might seem hard, but you’ll get a special reward when your chosen by God.”

Is it possible to prepare yourself for a ministry that might be choosing you?

‭God Bless +++‬

Rev. J. Loren Russell is an associate minister at both Goodwill and The Greater Universal Baptist Churches in the Bronx, President/CEO of The JLR Company for Church Financial &. Strategic Consulting, and hosts “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Soul 1 Radio, Mondays 8:00 – 10:00 PM. Listen by phone” at 626-226-1448. Be sure to Friend “Matters of Faith” on Facebook and email us at Order your copy of Matters of Faith: The Book here.

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