Serving in a ministry and leading a team, I expected this book to enlighten me on my good points and those upon which I need to improve. The first line I loved was “When I was discerning my call, I read through these letters daily to better grasp what a life of ministry entails, how one is to serve the church, and, especially to clarify God’s will for my life.”, I felt this book would be for me!
And then I hit this: “As we do, we make clear our convictions that the office and function of the pastor/elder are biblically reserved for qualified men.” *gasp*, quite literally, I gasped! I don’t agree with this at all, with female friends leading ministries as pastors and deacons and serving myself in an all women ministry, I take serious exception to this interpretation of the Bible. I decided to keep reading in the hope of seeing past this.
Onward until I hit this prejudice just a few lines down: “…my default position is that one who has been divorced is most likely unfit to serve as a pastor.”
At that point, I took to skimming! If the reader holds to the previously listed paradigms, the writing is eloquent and the arguments well-put. For those who don’t, skip this one! I couldn’t trust the soundness of the discussions in light of what I see as misinterpreting the text, it discredited everything said further!
From the back cover
Are you sure you want to be a church leader?
In his pastoral epistles, the apostle Paul lists some high standards for church leaders: character above reproach, teaching ability, management skills, self-control—the list goes on, and the grading curve is steep. It makes us ask, “Do I really want to be a church leader?”
Discerning Your Call to Ministry will help you answer that question. A tool for seminary students, pastors-in-training, and even current pastors, it serves to confirm or prompt deep thought about the calling to ministry through 10 probing questions, including:
Do you desire the ministry?Does your church affirm your calling? Do you love the people of God? Are you willing to surrender?
Pastoral dropout rates are high, and seminary admission rates are declining—signs that many of us don’t quite know what we’re signing ourselves up for. Author Jason Allen, a former pastor and the president of North America’s fastest growing seminary, gives readers a better picture of the calling. Presenting a series of diagnostic questions informed by Scripture and church history, he helps those seeking ordination or ministry positions make confident decisions about their service to God, one way or the other.
With thanks to Moody Publishers and NetGalley for the advance copy!