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Folks will sometimes say that a young man or woman who obviously has gifts in ministry is running from the ministry when she or he does not want any part of the ministry.

God has called them and instead of walking in that ministry, they want to do something else. That is a definition of “running from the ministry,” but there are other ways to run from the ministry.

Whole Counsel Preaching Is Needed

What about when God calls you to preach a word of correction to your people (it is time to live right) and instead you preach yet another word of encouragement (God will be with you in your pain). Certainly both are needed…but you might be running from your calling by not preaching both over the course of your ministry.

What about when your people need to hear about the ethical demands of being a member of the Kingdom of God (Turn the Other cheek, love your enemies, bless them that curse you), but you only preach about the benefits of being such a member? (God has a blessing for you with your name on it!)

Great Preaching Is Not Always Easy

You see as a preacher, we are called to preach the word in season and out of season. (2 Timothy 4:2) We are called to preach the whole counsel. (Acts 20:27) It may be easy some weeks, but it is gonna be hard other weeks, but nobody said it was gonna be easy. In fact we are told that godly living will result in persecution. (2 Timothy 3:12)

But too many of us are running from the ministry even as we preach every week. Too many of us are running from our calling even though we “wreck the house” and “shout the church.” Many of us are running from the ministry that God has called us to.

Steps To Better Preaching

What can we do if we are running from the ministry? First, pray to the Lord for both forgiveness and guidance as we seek to do better.

Second, recognize that God still has blessed and will bless the Word that has gone out. If God can use a Donkey (Numbers 22:28), God can use our truncated message. Yes the word will not come back void. (Isaiah 55:11)

Third, sit down and look at the real needs of your people. Turn off the media ministers that are on the radio and television. They cannot preach to your congregation’s needs, they must preach to a larger world, but you have a specific people with specific needs and hopes and dreams that must be addressed by the Balm of Gilead.

There are people who are desperately needing a word from God. Don’t give them empty promises of certain financial blessings. Instead stop “running from the ministry” and preach the full counsel of God to your people so that they can withstand the fiery ordeal. (1 Peter 4:12)

Sherman Haywood Cox II is the director of Soul Preaching. He holds the M.Div with an emphasis in Homiletics and a M.S. in Computer Science.

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Olutayo Fasipe

commented on Apr 10, 2013

This is quite true. There is the need to differentiate "what people want to hear" from "what people want to hear" in line with calling and God's perfect peculiar injunction to individual preacher. Thanks for the post.

John E Miller

commented on Apr 10, 2013

It is well to remember that having a part in ministry is not limited to the pulpit. Aquila and Priscilla's ministry to Apollos springs to mind and there are many more examples in the Acts.

Lafern Cobb

commented on Apr 10, 2013

Good message, thank you.

Dean Johnson

commented on Apr 10, 2013

This is one reason it's good to preach through books of the Bible--you preach what this week's passage says, no matter what. You do not go by your feelings in picking each week's sermon topic.

Del Downs

commented on Apr 10, 2013

I think we need to do what GOD says. How about praying in your closet, then preaching what GOD tells you to preach? Matt 10:27 "Whatever I tell you in the dark, speak in the light; and what you hear in the ear, preach on the housetops."

David Buffaloe

commented on Apr 10, 2013

Great points. Thank you!

Sherry Mcmillen

commented on Apr 10, 2013

Good points. I would add that I would like to see people remember that the most important thing a minister can do is to accomplish Mat 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. When we see that keeping his commandments is the indication of our love him, and keeping the Father's commandments is the indication of our love for him, we begin to realize it is all about keeping his commandments.

Annette Johnson

commented on Apr 10, 2013

Thank you I neeeded that

John Watson

commented on Apr 11, 2013

Excellent article. Words needed for those young and old in the ministry and service of our Lord.

Byron Sherman

commented on Apr 12, 2013

Amen Dean Johnson!

Charles Ingwe

commented on Apr 13, 2013

sound teaching man of God. I needed this one, Go bless you.

Simeon Ngezahayo

commented on Apr 19, 2013

God bless you, we need to walk in our callings. Some people are inquiring from God to know their callings, but others are fleeing. It is such a pity!

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