Kingdom Work (Ministry) – Qualified?
Recently for a seminary assignment we were challenged to consider whether or not we were actually qualified for kingdom work. For the assignment we were to read a selection from The Bondage Breaker by Neil Anderson as seen here:
Below is my assessment of myself and whether or not I feel that I am qualified for Kingdom work. I felt that these four categories were pretty good things for any Christian to look at. Spoiler: I think that any true Christian should be able to take this assessment and say “Yes, I am qualified for Kingdom work even if I still doubt myself.” Doubt is something that can be overcome. If you have accepted Christianity as the faith, then all of your qualifications have been met. It is not ourselves that qualify us, it is God Himself.
Three Areas of Qualification for Kingdom Work
The first area of qualification that Anderson talks about is belief. To some extent I would score myself quite well in this area. My belief in God is fairly solid and I believe to have faith that God can do all things that He pleases in whatever fashion He deems necessary. However, at the same time, I have not been in many situations where I have had to exercise the belief that I feel I hold. There are times that I am not very confident about something until I am already in the situation where I have to exhibit the confidence. I struggle sometimes getting that initial push. I feel that my belief not only in God Himself, but also in the wisdom that He has given me helps me through situations that might otherwise have proven difficult for someone with my level of field experience.
The second area that Anderson mentions is humility. In this area I also feel that I score strongly. It is not hard for me to humble myself and credit to God where and when credit is due. However, I also feel that I am confident in myself and the things that I have learned. Many times I feel that my experience in school gives me an edge over what some people said. I do believe that there is some risk here for me to fall into the idea that my studies are what give me strength, however, most of the time I am able to humble myself and see that even my success in my studies is due entirely to God.
The third area is that of boldness. This is probably the area that I need the most work in. I remember when I first took the step of signing up for seminary a couple of years ago. My biggest prayer concern was that he would give me the ability to be bolder in life. While I was often able to put on a good show for people, I was incredibly fearful. Whenever I thought about things there was often a sense of fear attached to it. I knew that I was not necessarily bold when it came to my faith. I described myself as more of a Gideon. His faith was there, but his boldness was not. I had actually forgotten about this prayer that I had often prayed back then. Now that I am able to look back and compare myself to how I am now, I can actually see that I am much more bold now than I was then. My self-confidence has been rising in just a couple of years and I feel that I have been stepping up to the plate more. This is still an area that needs work, but it is also a positive feeling to see that I have been improving.
The final area is that of dependence. I feel as though I do depend on God for all things in my life. Trying to get through life on my own is something that I know to be impossible. It is necessary to fully rely on God. My authority is in Christ, and my dependence is on Him (Anderson, 2000 pg. 88)
If someone were to straight ask me if I were qualified for kingdom work, I would probably laugh and say of course not. However, according to the category of humility and dependence, this in and of itself is a sign of qualification. While I would not see myself as completely incompetent when it comes to kingdom work and the ministry, I know that on my own I would be met with failure. What makes me truly qualified for kingdom work is that fact that I have the faith to rely on God to get me through whatever the world might have in store for me. I can humble embrace God as my true strength and provider of all my needs. I can rely on the promises that God will bring us boldness and help me to overcome my fears. These fears are particular overcome when I place my dependence on God and His authority in and over my life. Therefore, I can with fear and trembling, and through a spiritual boldness say that I do believe I am qualified for kingdom work. And if that is not humbling and in need of dependence on God, I do not know what is.
Your friend, brother, and companion in Christ,