An unexpected calling?

Well, I got home late last night. It was like college all over again. After the Wednesday night service I began talking to one of the guys from the church that I have a good enough relationship to talk to in some depth. It seems the list of people who are in this category are growing. Church ended at 8:00, and I didn't leave his house until 12:15.

During the conversation, I was struck with the conviction that I might be wrong concerning the paid ministry and that God is calling me to it. Crazy, I know. Maybe my ramblings about in the last few weeks were a self-induced building up of my defenses against God and His will for my life. Maybe God had me go on this journey in order to learn something that will prove beneficial down the road. Or maybe it wasn't even for me.

One might wonder how I can come to this conclusion after talking against it here for two weeks. My wife wonders that same thing after listening to me talk about it for years. Maybe some of you have been secretly praying for me. Maybe it is all made up in my mind. I would like something more concrete.

Maybe God has been ingraining in me the ideal of what his church should be, so that when I get a paid ministry I can truly strive for the ideal. I hope I would not be too lazy that I try to shove off jobs without adequately equipping those that are getting them piled on to them. Nor do I want to be too controlling and do all the jobs myself or pass on jobs yet keep all the decision-making to myself.

I still firmly believe in the goal of lay-ministry and the paid staffless church. But we also live in a cultural setting where many might not be reached except through the church structured like the world's businesses. It isn't a sin to not have the ideal format if we are still focusing on the most important thing a body of believers should be doing, loving those they run across in their lives. It only becomes a sin when our structure prohibits us from doing the things God is calling us to do.

So here I am. I would like some confirmation. My wife would too. The next step is confusing. The only hesitation is my concern over what happens with the store I am currently managing? I don't want to leave my family out to dry.

Your prayers would be appreciated.