Transitioning Pastors from Paid Positions to Released Callings

25 08 2008

When we feel “called into the ministry” we almost immediately, without thinking, get on a training track to hold a paid position in a church or ministry.

When we transition to an understanding that those “callings” are usually our first realization that we are one of the 5-fold ministry gifts given to the church (apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor or teacher listed in Eph. 4) we need to ask, is the best way to be released in a 5-fold gifting taking a full-time paid position in a church or ministry?  What are the alternatives?  Ephesians 4 describes these 5 gifts as equippers of the whole church (in context church here = universal church) and are not commanded to lead a single local church but to train many (read here and here for more on this).

Then we have a huge problem.  Once a pastor or paid ministry position holder realizes they are 5-fold and, therefore, they want to be released to minister to multiple bodies and multiple city-churches, they get paralyzed by three difficult questions –

  1. How will I make money (feed my family)?
  2. Who will take care for the people I’m actively caring for now?
  3. How does this BETTER release my gift then holding a paid position?

These questions must be given sound and realistic answers for those holding paid positions to want to transition out of them. In the next few days I’d like to think through and discuss possible answers to each of these questions.  But if you hold a paid position in a church please ask yourself this very simple question first – if you could be financially supported, your people could be better cared for, and you could be fully released with better opportunities to use your gifts and NOT have to hold a specific paid position in one church would you want to?  Many have said to me, pastors don’t want this (and some truly don’t) but I’ve discovered that MANY would love to make this transition if you could only answer these three questions well.



One response

30 04 2014
How is A United Body of Christ Equiped? | Fellow Citizens With the Saints

[…] Check out this blog on how to transition from a paid position to a released calling: […]

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