No, this isn’t a Dante’s Opinion post…unless you consider me answering my own question the same as answering from others.

This is a post years in the making. But, a couple of weeks ago, I finally ran into something that made me stop and think.

Being a Christian minister is something I currently don’t see myself as. However, a couple of weeks ago, something happened that make something click in me. Of course I’ll tell you what happened. Backstory first!

At my church’s foodbank, I read items from this very blog, as well as chapters from my book. They seem to enjoy my work as you readers do. Without considering it, especially when I read stuff from my book, I had the form of preaching nailed.

It’s funny how you end up doing something you’re afraid of without realizing you’re doing it. I’ll explain that comment later.

I was reading a post from this blog one foodbank week and, when I was done, one of the women said this: “While you were reading that, the Holy Spirit told me to tell you that you’re suppose to be a minister and you need to take a pulpit speech class”.

Now, if this was the first time anybody has said something like that to me, I’d be in shock. But no, I’ve heard such things before. However, I never ran into the word “minister”.

Back up even more, there was a man who used to be a client for the very same foodbank (this place be hoppin’!) who, after hearing me read something yet again, told me that I was going to be a youth pastor at some point. This was years ago. I’m 25 now; like, I’m too young to be hearing these things.

Other people who have read my book or heard me speak say the same things, but I usually hear “preacher” and “pastor”. Never “minister”. Okay, technically they are the same thing…sort of. Whatever.

It was only a couple of days ago from when I started writing this post that I looked into what it means to be a minister and how to become one.

My first instinct was “Nope, not interested”. A lot of what I saw was my potential responsibilities would be to talk…to the congregation. No. I don’t do that. Now, I bring you to two statements that I said in this post that prove me wrong (I usually don’t argue with myself but…yeah):

At my church’s foodbank, I read items from this very blog, as well as chapters from my book.

And:

It’s funny how you end up doing something you’re afraid of without realizing you’re doing it. I’ll explain that comment later.

There’s a reason why I enjoy doing lighting and why I loved being an usher at my church: I’m not in the spotlight. I fear it with all of my heart. I try to stand in it. I sing. Play instruments. Dance. Act. I’ve done all of that so, from experience, I do NOT enjoy the spotlight. I get terrible stage fright and, usually during the days right before the performance, I worry myself sick.

Yet, I managed to read in front of a group of people each week for a time…like a Sunday service. Huh. Now of course, I literally have my phone in my face as I read straight from the blog. I don’t notice the eyes on me. I block it out. I don’t call it preaching; I call it reading from a blog. I mean, we’re really grasping at air here.

I looked up what a minister does. What a minister does, I typically do at this time so I found it funny. I teach in my church and witnesses say I do a great job. But, do I? Or are people being nice? I can’t stand compliments because I fear they lead to pride and then I fall.

I am somewhat active in my community if you consider the foodbank and all of my talking.

I…I “preach” to many.

But then I see other things expected. Like, weddings and baptisms. No. I’m not officiating that. I hate being in those and they involve speaking in front of people. With a microphone. That’s sick. I’m sick.

You know, I stumbled upon a Bible passage that really made me think this isn’t something for me because it would involve doing something I never really wanted to do. You ready? 1 Timothy 3:1-7:

This is a faithful saying: If a man desires the position of a bishop, he desires a good work. A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach; not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous; one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence (for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?); not a novice, lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the same condemnation as the devil. Moreover he must have a good testimony among those who are outside, lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

There are items in there that are way too much for me. But see, the problem here is I agree with it. Problem? I don’t want…oh fine…I don’t have any desire to have a family of my own. Yet, if I can’t lead small band of people, indeed, how would I oversee more?

If there was a way to be a minister, without being required to go down that road, I would maybe go for it. Maybe.

You could argue that my lighting team is something of a family I run. Combine that with the fact that the majority of members are youth, and the youth pastor comment, it sort of…yeah. I mean, you could twist it around like that.

But then…

Eh…

See, now I-the thing is, but, I mean…who cares? No, really, who cares? Who cares about titles? Why can’t I just live life? Why can’t I go to church and do what I do and go home? “Minister Dante” doesn’t sound right. I like Dante.

I give proper respect. All of the pastors and reverends at my church are addressed properly by me. That’s their title. That’s their name.

I don’t care for that. I don’t need that.

You know, we have a problem, right? I hid something from you. I hid a detail from you about when that lady told me I was to be a minister. I was reading a specific post and, in it, I said something very specific. The lady pointed it out and said, when I said what I said, that’s when the Holy Spirit told her to tell me. So, I will have to quote what I said in the linked post. Just great:

When God tells me something, it’s a wrap, really. I have heard stories. I have lived them. When I tell you I am moving on to do something I’m called to do, I mean it.

So, in my own words, I really should shut the f up, right?

I have two answers: Yes, or no. Or one answer: It depends.

Okay but what if she’s just talking? Like, false witness and some stuff? I don’t simply absorb everything that comes to me just because “the Lord told me to tell you” stuff. Maybe she misunderstood? Drunk? I don’t know!

Do I really believe that?

Okay, but God and I have a long history of Him using people to tell me things. I don’t like being around people, but God decided that would be how I hear from Him. This guy…shake my head. I have told you how He used two people to tell me how I was supposed to do lighting in my church. I haven’t doubted my mission ever since. I’m stubborn like that. Well, my quote says it all: It’s a wrap.

If God really told her to tell me such things, I have serious work to do. The question is when. That’s the tough question.

I did my research on how to be ordained. It’s tricky; but I usually see one major requirement: Calling. You need to have a sense of calling to even begin the journey. Duh. It’s a big role to play. Then, it sort of branches off. Maybe you go to some theological school or something. Take a class in something. Your church may want you to do stuff. Application process. I don’t have that in me.

Like, I do these things already without having to do anything. I don’t see why I have to potentially pay up money I don’t have (no, money is not my only issue) to do something for free. And then, the speaking in front of people just goes away. I don’t want…responsibility. I don’t want it to be my official job.

I’m really in a tough spot, here. I don’t have any kind of calling and the requirements to be something like this are just tiresome to look at. But, again, is this the right time? She didn’t say. She just said I was suppose to do this. If this word is true, perhaps at some point in my life, I will find a way to want to do this.

Hey now, it’s not like I absolutely don’t want to do this. I think I’m lazy. I am a bum, really. I work hard for when I need to. When I want to. When I know I have to. Building this blog was hard. Building a lighting ministry was hard. But, I know that’s what I was supposed to do and I enjoy it.

I saw the requirements to get those things done. It was challenging but I was set. I’m not set on being a minister. So, if I became one, I would rather not do anything to earn it. And that’s the problem.

First of all, I have to be convinced that this is the voice of God telling me I am to do this. From a history standpoint, it seems to scream this is my path, but nothing is clicking in my spirit right now. I just know to do things and when to do them. I don’t know about this one yet, even after just about all of my adult life hearing it.

I think I also need to know when. When do I move in on this? This seems like a time consuming path and there is a lot of stuff going on in my life. Heck, I told you 2016 was a year to forget. So, I really just don’t care. God will have to tell me something. I need more than what I have so far.

But He and I know one thing: Once I receive a word form Him, it’s a wrap. If this is my path, nothing will stop me; which is why I like to be sure this is what I am to do. I know He will point me where to go; all I need is to be told to start. I’m not afraid of how I will get there. I’m afraid to start.

That sums up this post, really. If I had to answer my question today, it’s a big no. God sees things you don’t. People see things in you that you don’t. That’s just how it is a lot of the time. So, it’s probably a good idea to ask people if it makes sense…

That phrase. “Makes sense”. That’s a trap. God’s ways…His “sense”…are higher. Different. What makes no sense to me makes perfect sense to Him. I wasn’t always a good speller, so it made sense to my family I couldn’t write. But it didn’t make sense to God, now did it? Who knows how many years I wasted deciding not to write because I couldn’t spell?

Is that where I’m at? Do I need to change my way of thinking and see what God sees? That’s a big “duh”, but how? How do I get on His level?

If only it was that easy.

Anyway, before I interrupted myself, I was saying I should ask people what they see in me. I would imagine God will use somebody to say something. I know how to become ordained. Like, I can map out how I would do it. But, it’s all on when and if this is something I really should pursue.

I’d really like to end this post on some sort of cool saying or cliffhanger. Instead, I’ll just awkwardly end it here.

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