Summary: Everyone is called into the ministry - your ministry is right where God has placed you now.
When we hire a new pastor we, regard the pastor’s new position as a call, not just a job. When we brought on Pastor Karlin a few months ago we said that he was answering a call from the Lord to this position here in Anchorage Alaska. We were very intentional when we preformed our search - this is a call, not merely employment.
When we think of a pastor taking a position at a church or a missionary heading out to the mission field, it is more than obvious to us that they have answered the call of the Lord Jesus. I mean, when we think of someone like Billy Graham, who could deny that he had answered the call of the Lord Jesus into ministry?
As we have been working our way through the book of Acts it becomes more clear with every passage that Paul was called by the Lord Jesus into ministry. But, make no mistake, Priscilla and Aquila are just as equally called into ministry as the Apostle Paul was; Priscilla and Aquila are just as equally called into serving the Lord Jesus as the Apostle Paul was. The call upon Priscilla and Aquila is the same call that is upon Paul.
Now listen to this: The call of the Lord into ministry is just as equally upon you as it is upon me and Karlin today. Let me say that again in a different way. Every single person in this room this morning who has given their life over to Jesus Christ, is called into ministry as equally as Karlin and I have been. Everyone, from the 5 year old who has just discovered Jesus to the 92 year old great grandmother - all are called into ministry, into service of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now I know what you’re thinking, “I can’t quit what I am doing to go into full time ministry.”
You don’t have to quit what you are doing to go into full time ministry. The reason you don’t have to quit what your doing to go into full time ministry is, what you are doing is your full time ministry.
Understand that when you sit down and decide between job offers, or when you sit down and decide to forgo all job offers and be a stay at home parent, or when you decide that you will set full time employment aside and pursue higher education, or even when you are unemployed by circumstances beyond your control -- you are called into ministry.
Anytime you are deciding between several job offers or the like, you are not merely looking for the best career path, the best deal, the best offer, you as a Christian are choosing a call, exactly like Karlin and I did when we were called here to Anchorage.
In our passage today, we see that Priscilla and Aquila, are not apostles, preachers, or missionaries, they are tentmakers. Now, technically they are more than tentmakers, the word used there in verse 3 for tentmaker is a more general term that would include everything from making tents to leather goods. But, whatever these two are technically, they certainly are not pastors, apostles, prophets, missionaries or any kind of full time Christian vocation. Priscilla and Aquila are regular people, with regular jobs, but the impact that they have for Jesus Christ goes beyond many who were called to full time ministry in their day.
I have a friend back home, Michael. Michael is without a doubt a man with a call from Jesus Christ into ministry. Michael ministry is owning and running an auto body repair shop. Running an auto body repair shop may sound like the farthest thing there is from a church, but truly, Michael runs his auto body repair shop like a ministry, because it is a ministry.
Michael will always arrive early to his auto body repair shop and spends some time alone praying for guidance from the Holy Spirit for the day. Michael prays specifically for each of his seven employees and their families, only then is he ready to work. Michael’s employees have little idea he is even praying for them as Michael makes sure he is alone during this time. Then, after the business opens, Michael keeps his eye open for opportunities to serve the Lord Jesus, and they come at him relentlessly.
Dealing with angry customers in a godly way, dealing with difficult insurance companies in a way that honors Jesus Christ and through it all answering the call Jesus has placed upon him. This a part of ministry at his shop.
There is the single mother without insurance whose car he quietly repairs for free or the used car he takes a loss on so someone will have something to drive to work. When an employee has a death in the family, guess who pays for the funeral or the reception? Or, when an employee is seriously injured, who is it that pays the man’s salary for the full year he is in recovery? Michael of course.